Marie Stopes ad
Leading Christian organisations have written to TV watchdog Ofcom to complain about the Marie Stopes advertisement. Shown just after the watershed, the advert for the abortion and contraception advice clinic has sparked outrage.
In an open letter to Ofcom and the advertising standards agency (ASA), J. J. Scarisbrick, national chairman of LIFE, wrote: ‘The claim that this will be advertising post-conception advice, not provision of abortion, is disingenuous. Everyone knows that the adverts are intended to provide quick access to an abortion clinic.
‘It is the clear duty of Ofcom and the ASA to ensure that the women who present for abortion at a Marie Stopes clinic should receive adequate counselling – as is required by the Care Quality Commission and recommended by the Royal College of Psychiatrists.
‘It is the clear duty of Ofcom and the ASA to insist that the Marie Stopes advertising carries a health warning – namely that induced abortion can do serious harm to a woman’s mental and physical health’.
A statement from Christian Concern for Our Nation said of the ad, ‘This is a deceptive marketing exercise. Abortion is not mentioned in the brief clip, yet Marie Stopes in its own press release is presenting it as a commercial for abortion services.
‘This deception must be exposed, for it threatens to be part of a wider strategy to further normalise abortion in our nation. Despite the fact that abortion remains illegal in the UK except in a narrow range of circumstances, those provisions are being exploited, such that over 200,000 abortions took place in 2008.
‘We believe that the television commercial will contravene the spirit of the code which governs such advertising and the broadcasting of it flouts the protections and provisions of the code’.