As you may be aware, I started a petition on Saturday night in response to a Herald report on a planned “US-style anti-abortion protest” taking place at Glasgow New Southern Hospital (petition’s over, I’ll call it it’s proper name now).
My reasons are here.
I have to admit, it has been amazing watching the number of signatures grow, above 3,600 which is incredible, and the support I have received from both genders is very warming.
Imagine my surprise yesterday to see Libby Brooks of the Guardian tweet that the Greater Glasgow & Clyde Health Board had issued a statement saying they had never given permission for this event to take place on site.
I contacted Gerry Braiden of the Herald – the writer of original article – to see if he knew about this. He replied that the Health Board had been contacted on Friday, but that they had only responded this morning and that the original article had been updated. When asked who the original information re permission had come from he stated that it was from The Catholic Observer.
Gary was very helpful, but it does seem odd that the Herald would run what is really a non-urgent story unverified. The protests do not start until Lent – February 10th – so waiting 3 days to publish would not have made a great difference. If the original story was correct I would probably have posted the petition last night, but with it being off hospital grounds, and on public land I would have grumbled but not felt the degree of anger I did on Saturday.
This is, as I have said before, a highly emotive subject and people need clear heads to deal with it. I started the petition because I did not want to see protest and possible counter protest outside a hospital’s doors. The fact is it will still occur outside the hospital gates, but at least the service users and staff should not have to walk through it.
I will not comment on the Catholic Observer claiming permission when there is none. There is a word for how I feel about them and I’ll let you guess what it is. However, I also think the Herald saw the opportunity for a high-click article. Whether that is responsible, again I’ll let you decide.
There’s also been a good piece about the devolvement of abortion law to the Scottish Government by Politics Scot He’s having technical problems at the minute, so his videos are usually more polished. but his content is great and I highly recommend him.