Edinburgh's independent student newspaper

Edinburgh Life Society

Friday 29th October 07.00

Listed among the Edinburgh University Students’ Association’s extensive societies page is the ‘Life Society’, a pro-life organisation that seeks to ‘empower women...who feel abortion is their only choice’ and encourage them to feel that it is possible to be a young mother, whilst juggling work and education. 

Life Society’s biography states they “believe in the intrinsic value of human persons, and work to build a society which shares and advocates this universal dignity. The Life Society exists to organise talks, debates, and discussions that support respect for human life from conception to natural death”, encouraging students to join. 

The Student was able to speak exclusively with the Life Society, regarding their beliefs, the core of which is “that every member of the human family is entitled to human rights, primarily the right to life”. 

The Student also approached the University of Edinburgh Justice Society, who are committed to educating everyone on their right to justice, free from barriers and discrimination.

The Justice Society stated they felt as though Life Soc are “working to prohibit access to aspects of healthcare that are guaranteed in our laws.” The Justice Society believes that “everyone should have the opportunity to make choices about their body with no pressure or judgement”. 

Although the Life Society state they would never shame a woman who had an abortion, as they realise that it is a distressing experience, they do feel as though mothers should not have “the ‘right’ to kill their innocent child”, and believe that “all abortions are the deliberate ending of an innocent and defenceless human life”. 

The society, however, aims to provide comfort and a sanctuary for many young women, who may be facing external adversity by offering support to young mothers and educating them on how to access various types of services, including university funding.

The society told The Student that none of their members would ever shame or guilt a woman who decided to have an abortion, but would support them in an attempt to change their mind. 

They do not want to force anyone to have a baby unwillingly but aim for women to feel as though abortion is a last resort, and would never facilitate an abortion decision. The society’s ambition is not to make abortion illegal but “unthinkable”. 

This is a topical issue at present in the City of Edinburgh as a whole. Less than three weeks ago, Jolene Campbell of the Edinburgh Evening News reported on a local pro-life group who were protesting outside an Edinburgh abortion clinic.

Back Off Scotland, an organisation founded by former University of Edinburgh students, has requested that the Scottish Government bring in buffer zones around abortion clinics, enabling women a safe route of access without the risk of being approached by protestors. 

Edinburgh City Council passed an act for buffer zones to be introduced, however, this is yet to be implemented. Further protests took place on Chalmers Street, Edinburgh on October 13th by the pro-life group 40 Days For Life.

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