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         MAY 2016


1605 image news

Global trend for sex-selective abortions identified

There have been reports from various media outlets recently about research which suggests the scale of sex-selective abortions taking place is worse than has been previously acknowledged. A new study has been published by the Charlotte Lozier Institute (a U.S-based research group) which has found statistics which suggest imbalanced sex ratios amongst certain ethnic groups. This is well known to be the case in China which favours boys as a result of the one child per family rule as boys are deemed to bring more financially and socially to the family, but this new research suggests sex-selective abortions are occurring globally, including parts of Europe and the U.S. The study shows that Asia-Pacific populations have developed a highly unbalanced male-based ratio in the last 20 years and that a third of births in families of Chinese, Koreans and Indians in the U.S – who were foreign born and already had two daughters – showed a ratio of 151 boys to 100 girls.@ Skewed sex-ratios were also discovered in Europe and particularly prolific in Russia.

A Canadian study has also been released recently and reported by New Scientist Magazine,@ billed by the author of the article as “the clearest evidence yet that abortion is being used to help parents have a son.” Previously, there had been suspicions about the practice but little evidence to link it to the abortion rate. This Canadian study tracked one million births through anonymised patient data, noting the parents’ place of birth and the sex of the child from the Canadian province of Ontario. It found that for Indian-born mothers who already had two daughters, their third child was a boy 66% of the time – “much more than chance would dictate.” Even more alarming is that Canadian-born mothers were not more likely to have a boy after two daughters. When these figures were compared with abortion records, an Indian born mother who had also had one or more abortions had a 77% chance that her third pregnancy which led to a live birth was a boy. Whereas New Scientist tries to shrug these figures off because the population tended to be immigrants to Canada and therefore the issue would be “likely to resolve itself as immigrant communities become more integrated,” they do not take into account the human cost of such a global trend. As Andrea Williams summarises when considering these new studies in the light of the U.K doctors who were not prosecuted for offering sex-selective abortions, “Any loss of life due to abortion is a tragedy. But 'gender-abortion' is still illegal under the 1967 Abortion Act, and it is not only saddening but disturbing that they are being permitted in this country.”