ABORTION SUPPORT NETWORK – Women’s requests for help in the time of Covid-19

The Abortion Support Network (ASN) provides financial assistance, practical informationand accommodation to people living in Ireland, Northern Ireland, the Isle of Man, Poland,Malta and Gibraltar forced to travel and pay privately for abortionin other countries.The cost ranges from £400 to more than £2000 depending on circumstance and stage of pregnancy. While other organisations campaign for much needed law reform, ASN is providing people travelling for abortions with the thing they need most immediately: money.

In April, they heard from 67 people seeking assistance, 10 more than last month. They included 1 from Gibraltar, 7 from Northern Ireland, 6 from Poland, 18 from the Republic of Ireland and 11 from Malta. Here are a few of them:

“I’m 15 and I’m worried I’m pregnant. We used a condom but I’m getting dizzy, 2 days late on my period and I have an upset stomach. Is there any chance I can get online help or order pills online?” 
“Hello, just found out I am 4-5 weeks pregnant… Considering the abortion ban and the current fact I can’t travel, what is there to do? Please help me understand my chances of abortion in this almost impossible times.”
“I was just looking for some advice please. I’m having a test [for Down’s Syndrome] done next week and paid for it only to be then told it takes a few weeks for results to come back, and they won’t send it away until I have my 13-week scan anyway, which brings me over the 12-week Irish threshold. I’m worried that if anything is wrong with the pregnancy I won’t be able to travel to the UK because of Covid. Are women still making the journey over and are hospitals accepting them? I know everything could be fine but I just want to be prepared.”
“I’m 16 and I’m from Northern Ireland and I’m pregnant. I’m only a month in and I need an abortion pill as I can’t travel to England during this time. Is there any way of getting it?”
“I’m in Malta and I’m pregnant and wanna do an abortion. Normally I would just travel to another country, but because of the Covid-19 I don’t know how to travel from here. If you could help me, please get back to me as soon as possible.”
“Good morning, considering situation with Covid-19, me and my partner are both trapped in this country without the jobs we came here for. We are now stuck. I’m pregnant I’m not sure how long, maybe 9-10 weeks, but we are not able to keep this baby since we have no idea how long we will stay without job. This was a bad way to find out there is no abortion in Malta.”
“Hi I would like to get some information regarding my problem, as I am 6 weeks pregnant and I am facing a problem with an abusive relationship with my partner, in my opinion this baby is going to face a lot of problems and I am not ready to keep this pregnancy, I wish to get pills to remove before it will be too late, can you help me with this please?”

“We live in France and my 14-year-old daughter is 21 weeks pregnant, and she does not want to keep it. We have already consulted in France and it is too late to do so here. My daughter scares me because she says if she can’t abort, she’s gonna kill herself. Help me.”

SOURCE: ASN Newsletter, 14 May 2020