Councils accused of pressuring women to get abortions

“Grotesque” practice of advising low-income women of the consequences of having another child blurs legal lines

November 26th, 2012 10:15 pm| by admin

Poor pregnant women are being pressured to get abortions by social workers in their councils, according to lawyers that specialise in helping at-risk citizens. 


21-year-old Simone Jørgensen said that she was pressured to pursue an abortion when she became pregnant in September of last year. 


"My social worker told me that if I wanted to keep the daughter that I already have, then I had to get an abortion," Jørgensen told DR news.


Several lawyers confirmed that councils have pressured other young women like Jørgensen to get an abortion.


"I get a call every other month from a woman in this situation," Lars Buurgaard Sørensen, a lawyer from Brønderslev, told DR. Sørensen called the practise "grotesque".


Rasmus Hedegaard, a lawyer from Aarhus, said he gets at least one call every month from women being pressured by their council. 


"It is offensive to threaten a mother that the state will take her child if she does not get an abortion," said Hedegaard. 


Hedegaard said that social workers should be offering young mothers security, not threats.


What the social workers are doing is against the law, according to one expert.


Trine Schultz, a social law professor at Aalborg University, told DR that while the law does give social workers the right to advise families of the potential consequences of having more children, “that is a long way from telling people that they should have an abortion."  


Schultz said that abortion was a health issue and that only health authorities should offer advice in that area. 


Peter Brügge, who supervises social workers in Randers, Jørgensen’s former council, said that he felt that the social worker was within their rights to mention abortion to Jørensen.


 "I think it is fine to talk about abortion as an option," he said.  "That doesn't mean we should push anyone, but they should understand the possible consequences of having more children.”

Adele's first tour for five years (photo: Youtube)
Adele coming to Denmark
Adele has announced she will perform two concerts in Denmark while touring...
Anne-Marie Rindom is hoping to get nominated for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro (photo: Facebook/Anne-Marie Rindom)
Danish fleet racer wins women’s world championship in Oman
Danish fleet racer Anne-Marie Rindom has today won the Laser Radial Women...
Construction of the immersed tunnel that will connect Rødby in southern Zealand with Puttgarden in Germany (photo: Youtube)
Fehmarn Belt opening set for 2026
The Fehmarn Belt Fixed Link – an immersed tunnel that will connect sout...
They need to be caught before they can verify who their parents are (photo: iStock)
Male descendants of non-Western immigrants commit the most crimes in Denmark
A new report from Danmarks Statistik shows the number of crimes committed b...
David Guetta is ready to bust beats at Tinderbox (photo: David Guetta Facebook)
David Guetta coming to Denmark
Coldplay, Iron Maiden, The Cure and Rihanna have already announced their ar...
It's not been a good year for the Vikings, as the team has only won 2 out of 17 matches this season (photo: Froztbyte)
Former Superliga club close to bankruptcy
Danish professional club FC Vestsjælland, which is also knows as FCV Viki...