Scottish government to hire abortion policy leader

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Scottish government to hire abortion policy leader

The Scottish Government is recruiting a high-level civil servant to take the lead on abortion policy, including the imposition of buffer zones. The position, with a salary of up to £62,000, has been slammed by SPUC as an “outrageous and undemocratic use of taxpayers’ money”.

Read Abortion clinic worker: women are often pressured to abort

In an internal job advertisement seen by SPUC, the Scottish Government says it is looking for a “Team Leader, Abortion Policy and Buffer Zones” who will “have the opportunity to lead and shadow Bill team working with a range of stakeholders to support the use of safe access (‘buffer’) zones which could restrict protests or vigils around healthcare facilities, including abortion clinics”.

The job ad goes on to say that the successful candidate will be “leading work on legislation on buffer zones, managing the shadow Bill team to enable the Scottish Government to respond appropriately to the planned member’s bill on this subject”.

The stated role also involves working with ministers to develop DIY abortion policy, which the ad describes as an “innovation” during the pandemic.

The post-holder will also work on implementing the Women’s Health Plan. Of the proposed 66 actions listed in the health plan, eight refer to abortion, seeking to “improve access to abortion services”. Making “telephone or video consultation universally available as an option for abortion services” appears to be top of the list.

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A SPUC spokesperson said: “There is no legal basis for restricting pro-life vigils around abortion facilities in Scotland. Yet the Scottish Government, clearly intent on imposing buffer zones by stealth, is a seeking a highly paid civil servant to ‘respond’ to a members’ bill on this subject.

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