The UK Government plans to devolve abortion law to the Scottish Parliament.

Scottish Labour Equalities Spokesperson Jenny Marra responded to the news:

“The Secretary of State has taken this decision behind closed doors without any consultation with women’s groups across Scotland. The Smith Commission promised a process to consider this, but that seems to have only meant a process that involved ministers of the UK and Scottish Governments, and not women across Scotland.

Scottish Labour firmly believes that the safest way to protect the current legal framework around abortion is for it to remain at UK level where there is a strong consensus around the current time limits.

Leading human rights and women’s groups have said that devolving abortion law could undermine the right of women to make their own decisions. Scottish Labour want to see powers devolved for a purpose, like tax powers to invest in education or welfare powers to protect our vulnerable, and we joined a range of groups who believe that abortion law should stay at a UK wide level, groups who the UK Government have failed to consult with.”