U.K. “Clarifies” Buffer Zone Rules

A win for Christians praying near abortion clinics.


John Stonestreet

British officials are again quarreling over the enforcement of so-called “buffer zones” outside abortion clinics. Less than a year after Birmingham police were caught on video arresting a woman for “silently praying in her mind” on the sidewalk, the British Home Secretary issued new guidance to clarify the buffer zone rules, which prohibit public demonstrations within 150 meters of a clinic entrance. According to the statement, merely mentioning abortion or offering to help women going into a clinic cannot be considered illegal, and silent prayer “should not, on its own, be considered to be an offence under any circumstances.” 

One Labour Party member of Parliament told reporters that the new guidance is “contrary to all logic” and would “undo” all protections for women seeking abortion. That’s a bit of an overstatement. But Christians do believe in the power of prayer, and though this clarification about prayer is welcome, we don’t need the state’s permission to do it. 


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