The United Kingdom’s first television ad for abortion services ran earlier this week. The ad (see 0video) is sponsored by Marie Stopes International (MSI), one of the world’s leading family planning organizations, and advertises MSI’s 24-hour hotline. The ad will not air in Northern Ireland, as abortion continues to be illegal there. The ad will run approximately 25 times throughout the next month, reported the New Zealand Herald.
According to an MSI press release, the ad was created after a study showed only 42 percent of adults in the UK know where they can go, aside from a general practitioner, for advice if they or their partners were faced with an unplanned pregnancy. MSI’s CEO, Dana Hovig, said, “We hope the new ‘Are you late?’ campaign will encourage people to talk about abortion more openly and honestly, and empower women to make confident, informed choices about their sexual health.”
Naomi Phillips of the British Humanist Association told the Guardian UK that “Many will be surprised that only now will the first advert be broadcast on television to give women information about options they have following an unwanted pregnancy.” She continued, “It is vital that women with unintended and unwanted pregnancies are able to access, in a timely way, accurate, objective information about all of the options open to them. It seems that television advertising could be an effective way of reaching thousands of such women, and is to be welcomed.”