Britain's first abortion television advert to be aired despite ban

Posted By: Staff
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London, May 20 (ANI): A TV channel in Britain will air an ad based on abortion for the first time despite a ban on the commercials.

The sexual health clinic Marie Stopes International has paid for a slot on Channel 4 for an advert targeted at women in the middle of an unplanned pregnancy.

Since the organisation is a charity, it does not make a profit from its services, and so, has circumvented a ban on the commercials.

However, viewer watchdogs, religious groups and family campaigners have condemned the inappropriateness of the ad, being sold alongside other products such as soap powder and cars.

Their arguments are that besides the inappropriate medium, the topic is sensitive and could have repercussions for the mother as well as the child. They will also encourage the trend of abortion amongst young women.

The commercial advertising of abortion services is currently banned by the Broadcast Committee of Advertising Practice (BCAP) but it only applies to private profit making companies.

The 30-second ad will be aired at 10.10 pm during a new game show called "The Million Pound Drop Live" hosted by Davina McCall.

It will not actually mention the word abortion but instead ask "Are you late?" - a reference to a missed period - and then direct viewers to a helpline.

"We thought it was the right to bring abortion out into the open. It has been legal for 40 years, one in three women will have one before they are 45.

"It doesn't help to keep it under wraps," The Telegraph quoted Julie Douglas, marketing manager at the charity, as saying.

Anthony Ozimic, spokesman for the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children, said, "Marie Stopes may claim to be a non-profit organisation, but they have a financial interest in drumming up demand for abortion.

"Neither Marie Stopes nor any similar organisation should be allowed to advertise the killing of unborn children. We are taking advice regarding the legality of the scheduled advertisement."

A spokesman for BCAP said there had never been rules banning non-profit sexual advice services buying commercial space.

"The difference is they are offering advice about abortions and not selling abortions," he said. (ANI)

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