§ Lord Houghton of Sowerby
asked Her Majesty's Government:
Why it was necessary for over 1,500 women in Northern Ireland to travel to other parts of the United Kingdom to obtain abortions in 1980, and if the explanation is a different law in Northern Ireland, when this discrimination against women in Northern Ireland will be removed.
The Minister of State, Northern Ireland Office, (The Earl of Cowrie)
Her Majesty's Government have already said that it has no plans at present to extend the Abortion Act 1967 to Northern Ireland. Under Northern Ireland law abortions may only be carried out where the mother or child is at substantial medical risk. It is not possible without disproportionate cost to estimate how many of the women from Northern Ireland who secure abortions in Great Britain could have had them in Northern Ireland.