Buying abortion through the internet: exploring the social harm of criminalising abortion in Northern Ireland and the UK
This research is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, under its Transformative Research Programme.
The survey team comprises Goretti Horgan, Ann Marie Gray and Linda Moore.
The aim of this study is to provide a new framing of the debate around social harm and the criminalisation of abortion in the United Kingdom. The project explores the experiences of women in Northern Ireland who have used the abortion pill illegally and those in Scotland who have used it legally. The project also obtains the views of the general public in Northern Ireland on abortion. The study’s results will inform policy and service provision in the area of reproductive health.
The study used the 2016 Northern Ireland Life and Times Survey to obtain the views of the general public on a wide range of issues relating to abortion. Analysis of the survey data is available in a range of publications and blog articles:
- Attitudes to Abortion in Northern Ireland, by Ann Marie Gray, ARK Research Update 115, June 2017.
- Abortion attitudes and legislation, by Paula Devine and Goretti Horgan. This blog article was published by QPol at Queen's University on 23 April 2018.
- Why 50 years since the Abortion Act some people in Northern Ireland are still buying illegal abortions online – research explores their story, by Goretti Horgan. This article was published on the ESRC blog on 27 April 2018, to mark 50 years since the implementation of the 1967 Abortion Act.
- Do social attitudes to abortion suggest political parties in Northern Ireland are out of step with their supporters?, by Ann Marie Gray, Goretti Horgan and Paula Devine, ARK Feature 7, June 2018.
- Do Northern Irish people think abortion law should be reformed?, by Paula Devine, Ann Marie Gray and Goretti Horgan. This article was published on the UK Data Service Data Impact blog on 23 July 2018.
- The project team has provided written and oral evidence to the Women and Equalities Committee Inquiry on Abortion Law in Northern Ireland.
A one-day event on Friday 8th March 2019 will report on key findings from this project, followed by a response from policy makers. Full information is available on the ARK Events page.
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