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04 / 08 / 2010 - Precious Life condemn decision of advertising watchdog to reject complaints about abortion ads
Northern Ireland's leading pro-life group Precious Life has condemned the decision of the advertising watchdog to reject complaints about the first UK television advertisements for abortion, which were broadcast on Channel 4. The pro-life group said it was "an outrage" to claim the ads did not mislead viewers.
In May, Precious Life launched a campaign urging people to contact the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) to make complaints about the screening of advertisements for abortions on television. The ads were for Marie Stopes International - one of the largest abortion providers in the world.
Over 1000 complaints about the ads being misleading, offensive and harmful were received by the ASA.
However, today the ASA announced that they have rejected the complaints, claiming the ads did not mislead viewers because abortion wasnít mentioned.
Director of Precious Life, Bernadette Smyth said, "This is an outrage to claim the ads did not mislead viewers"
"They misled viewers by portraying the Marie Stopes International abortion agency as a organisation offering help to pregnant women. What they didnít show was the horrific reality of what they offer Ė the killing of their unborn children, nor did they show the physical and emotional harm suffered by women after Marie Stopes kill their children."
"Under the 1990 Broadcasting Act, advertising can not be offensive or harmful. These ads for abortion were offensive to the countless women physically and emotionally damaged by abortion, and lethally harmful to the hundreds of unborn children aborted every day."
She added, "Marie Stopes International claim to be a non-profit organisation, but that fact that they spent thousands of pounds on TV advertising proves they want to make even more money by drumming up demand for abortion. Marie Stopes International is not interested in helping women in crisis pregnancies. They are only interested in selling abortion. "
Bernadette Smyth concluded, "We have launched a campaign urging the public to bombard the ASA and Channel 4 with complaints about these ads that trivialised the killing of innocent unborn children. We are urging people to tell Channel 4 that they will no longer be viewing their channel unless they can give a guarantee that there will be no further screenings of these ads in the future."
Click here for details on how to make your complaint to Channel 4 and the ASA