Great article in the UK on the issue of publishing abortion statistics. They seem to understand what the MSM and others in Canada do not. Read and enjoy!
Publish abortion data
Telegraph View: Abortion should be debated openly and with all relevant information freely available.
By Telegraph View 7:18AM BST 18 Apr 2011
Few issues give rise to greater ethical controversy than abortion, which is why it should be debated openly and with all relevant information freely available. Yet for some years now, the Department of Health has refused to provide data about the number of late abortions carried out because of disability. These statistics were first requested in connection with an abortion of a baby with a cleft palate. Campaigners, who included the Rev Joanna Jepson, who was herself born with a jaw defect, were anxious to discover how many terminations were conducted for disabilities that did not fall into the legal definition of “a serious risk of physical or mental abnormality”.
The Health Department refused to supply the statistics, claiming that the information was “sensitive, personal and private”. In particular, officials were worried that individual doctors or patients would be identified. However, when a request was made under the Freedom of Information Act, an independent tribunal said it was satisfied that the likelihood of a doctor being identified from the statistics alone “is so remote that disclosure of the disputed information would not be unwarranted”. The Health Department was ordered to publish the data but lodged an appeal instead. Eighteen months on and the High Court will today hear the latest stage of this unnecessarily costly and protracted legal action. What is the Health Department trying to hide? Anonymised statistics do not constitute personal data and those organisations who seek to prevent their publication by pretending they do are helping no one in this debate. Public interest in the circumstances of late abortion is legitimate and full transparency is required. We would urge the High Court to end the Government’s obduracy on this matter as soon as possible.