Doctors and academics have claimed they were asked by the Royal Society of Medicine to hide the word “abortion” on signs and posters at a conference focused on the topic.
The campaign group Doctors for Choice UK he obscured the “Abortion Rights Clinicians” line on his billboard with three yellow Post-it notes that had the word “censored” on them.
The picture was shared on Twitter by Dr. Jane Dickson, sexual and reproductive health consultant, who said, “I can’t believe that in 2022 @RoySocMed has forbidden us to use the word #Abortion a tan #AbortionCare conference.” In subsequent posts, he said organizers had been asked to hide the word on signs and posters.
The conference is an event of the British Society of abortion Care Providers (BSACP) hosted by the Royal Society of Medicine (RSM) in London, and is run on a hybrid basis and participants can also join online.
According to online information The conference “provides an opportunity for health professionals working in the field of abortion care and provision to come together face-to-face as a supportive community.”
An RSM spokesperson said: “We are proud to have organized, promoted and sponsored this important conference on abortion care. We have used the term ‘abortion’ in all our promotional activities, in the event title and during the event itself. We are investigating the claims made today.”
Abortion Talk, My Body My Life and Doctors For Choice UK issued a joint statement saying they were invited to the conference to set up an exhibition and stand, as they had in previous years. However, upon arrival, they say RSM staff asked them to settle into a small seminar room in the basement, next to the toilets.
“Initially, we were told this was due to the ‘sensitive’ nature of the exhibit,” the statement added, noting the “emphasis” placed on a neighboring Children’s Trust conference related to pediatric brain injury.
The groups refused to set up in the basement, but were denied permission to set up in the main exhibitor space for the BSACP conference because they were not fee-paying exhibitors.
“A compromise was reached that we could set up the booth in the main refreshment area, as long as we covered the word abortion where it would be visible to Children’s Trust conference attendees,” the statement said. “Although we were hesitant to censor ourselves, overall, we decided this was a great example of why our organizations are so desperately needed.”
He added: “Abortion is medical care, and abortion providers attending this conference have received a clear message from the Royal Society of Medicine that this crucial area of medicine is something to hide and be ashamed of. . No other specialty would be subject to this stigmatizing treatment.”