Task: What do the terms quality of life and sanctity of life mean? Write down the definitions.
Abortion means the deliberate termination of a human pregnancy, most often performed during the first 28 weeks of pregnancy.
Task: When do you believe that life begins?
The Abortion Act 1967, as amended by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 1990, allows termination of a pregnancy by a registered medical practitioner, subject to certain conditions. This applies to England, Scotland and Wales.
Under the Act an abortion must be carried out in a hospital or specially licensed clinic. Before a legally induced abortion can take place, two doctors must agree that:
- the woman is less than 24 weeks pregnant, and
- it is necessary to prevent grave damage to the woman’s physical or mental health, or any of her existing children
Abortion is always legal, even after 24 weeks, if:
- there is a serious threat to the woman’s health or life, or
- there is substantial risk that the child will be born with physical or mental abnormalities and be seriously disabled
In cases of medical emergency, a second doctor’s agreement does not need to be sought.
The law outlined above does not apply to Northern Ireland or the Republic of Ireland.
Task: Write a summary of the law on abortion in the UK.
Task: Click here and watch the video.
Task: Find the answers to the following questions.
- What is the definition of abortion?
- What is the law on abortion in the UK?
- Create a table of three reasons why people are pro choice and three reasons why people are pro life
- Explain whether you think that pro life or pro choice arguments are most convincing
- What is a Catholic view on abortion?
- What is a liberal Christian view on abortion?
- What is a fundamentalist Muslim view on abortion?
- What is a liberal Muslim view on abortion?
- What is the 8th Amendment in Ireland?
- Do you agree with the referendum decision on the 8th Amendment? Explain why/why not