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Council considers banning anti-abortion protest

Mark Whitehead 12 October 2017

Anti-abortion protesters may soon be banned from standing outside a women’s health clinic after a vote by councillors in the west London borough of Ealing.

They overwhelmingly backed a motion to stop protests outside the Marie Stopes clinic which have been subject to daily vigils by a local group.

Local ‘pro-choice’ supporters say the protests have been going on for more than 20 years and have left women feeling intimidated and distressed.

Of the 61 councillors present at the full council meeting, 58 voted in favour of the motion, two abstained and in line with convention the mayor did not vote.

The motion said it wanted to ‘protect the rights of individuals from harassment and intimidation when accessing legally existing health services at the Marie Stopes Clinic and of local residents not to be exposed to related disruption and distress on a daily basis’.

An ongoing investigation launched in July will inform the council of its options.

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