A 24-year-old British woman with Down syndrome has filed a lawsuit against the government over an abortion law in the United Kingdom that allows abortions up until the moment of birth if the baby has a disability.
Heidi Crowter, a political activist with Down syndrome, partnered with Cheryl Bilsborrow, a British woman who has a child with Down syndrome, to file a lawsuit against the government over the abortion law in England, Wales, and Scotland. The abortion laws in the U.K. allow abortions up to the moment of birth if the baby has a disability, including Down syndrome, cleft lip, and club foot.
“Babies can be aborted right up to birth if they are considered to be ‘seriously handicapped,” Crowter said in a press release. “They include me in that definition of being seriously handicapped – just because I have an extra chromosome! Can you believe that? What it says to me is that my life just isn’t as valuable as others, and I don’t think that’s right. I think it’s downright discrimination.”
The pair have raised more than $50,000 for legal fees on a crowdfunding website.
There were more than 3,000 disability-selective abortions in 2018, including 618 for Down syndrome, according to Don’t Screen Us Out. Right to Life UK said that more than 90% of unborn babies diagnosed with Down syndrome in England and Wales are aborted.
Via disrn news