Pro-Lifer Ticketed For Praying Outside Abortion Clinic

Tierin-Rose Mandelburg | October 27, 2023
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I hate that this is not even the first time we’ve heard a story like this. 

A woman was interrogated by a police officer in Birmingham in the United Kingdom on October 18 while she was silently praying outside of an abortion facility. 

Our world is so anti-life that now you can’t even pray for the unborn without getting screwed over. 

The video of the event was posted by the United Kingdom branch of the Alliance Defending Freedom, which seeks to protect fundamental freedoms and promote “inherent dignity of all people.” Presently, the video has more than half a million views. 

In it, an "Officer Jones" with the West Midlands Police approached Isabel Vaughan-Spruce, who’s been cited for praying silently outside of an abortion clinic before, and asked a set of listed questions from a sheet that she was carrying. One of the questions was, “Are you here as part of an organized protest?” Of course Vaughan-Spruce said no. As a matter of fact, she wasn’t protesting at all. She was simply praying. 

The officer told Vaughan-Spruce, however, that she was in a “buffer zone” under a Public Place Protection Order that the abortion clinic set up. With that order, Vaughan-Spruce, according to Birmingham law, was apparently not allowed to pray in the space. 

The officer asked the praying woman if she’d move from inside to outside the “exclusion zone.” Since the woman was not protesting, she said, “I don’t believe I need to,” later adding, “I believe I’ve got a right to be here.”

Related: UK Authorities Arrest Woman Praying Outside Abortion Clinic

Still, the officer insisted that she was protesting and said she needed to issue a fixed penalty notice.

“I’m in the zone but I’m not protesting,” the praying woman said.

“Yes,” the officer replied, but then still issued a notice as if Vaughan-Spruce was protesting. 

“That will be given to you with the offense for failing to comply with the Public Space Protection Order and the Anti-Social Behavior Crime and Policing Act of 2014,” the officer said before indicating that her colleague would give her the ticket. 

In a report by ADF, Vaughan-Spruce clarified that she was not present in the zone as a way of protesting and the law doesn’t prohibit you from merely being present in the zone, but the officer still insisted she was protesting. 

 

“The UK government urgently needs to clarify that silent thoughts can never be illegal – even if those thoughts are in disagreement with the views of the State. This is the third time I have been treated like a criminal for peacefully, silently, and imperceptibly praying for women who are likely facing one of the worst days of their lives,” Vaughan-Spruce said about the situation. 

In the same report, Vaughan-Spruce said, “The buffer zone regulation has already sought to prevent me and others from counseling women desperately in need of help. And now, authorities are trying to remove my ability even to pray for these women. To fine somebody simply for their thoughts is grossly Orwellian and an insult to the freedoms that Britain is meant to protect.”

Like we mentioned before, this isn’t the first time Vaughan-Spruce has been “treated like a criminal” for her mere silent thoughts. Back in December she was literally arrested after praying outside of an abortion clinic.

For this situation, the charge was eventually dropped but that was after Vaughan-Spruce was questioned invasively on the street and was provided a warning that if she were to appear in this way in the future, a fine would be issued. 

We really live in a twisted world if it’s become commonplace for people to be arrested or treated like criminals for literally praying. 

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