RCN launches UK-wide survey of members on principle of relaxation of abortion laws

RCN launches UK-wide survey of members on principle of relaxation of abortion laws

- in Royal College of Nursing
NHS nurse
The Royal College of Nursing are asking their members what they think about decriminalising abortions – and plan to lobby Parliament if the majority of members vote in favour.

The UK’s largest nursing union could start lobbying the Government for a relaxation of abortion laws.

Termination a pregnancy is currently illegal in England unless a woman obtains consent from two independent doctors, who must both agree that the procedure is “necessary” in order to prevent serious physical or psychological harm to either the woman or unborn child.

In recent years a growing number of medical professionals have stated that this law is outdated and is preventing women from accessing abortions.

The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) union looks set to join that growing chorus, after they announced they will are sending a survey to their 435,000 members asking what they think about the decriminalisation of abortions.

If the majority of RCN members are in favour then the union plans to start campaigning for the Government to change the law.

Other powerful medical organisations who have come out in favour of decriminalisation include the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists and the British Medical Association who both changes their policies on the subject last year.

The Royal College of Midwives announced in 2016 that they were campaigning for a change in the law, although they failed to consult any of their members.

The RCN’s online survey can be found here, and is open until Sunday 18 March 2018.

In announcing the survey, Janet Davies – Chief Executive and General Secretary of the Royal College of Nursing – said:

Decriminalisation is an important issue for today’s society to consider and one the College is committed to having a position on.

As the largest nursing organisation in the United Kingdom, we wish to understand the views of our members.

I encourage all RCN members to complete the survey to help us inform our position.


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