Press release – for immediate release

Mother’s legal challenge to censorship zone criminalising prayer and support outside Ealing abortion clinic reaches Court of Appeal

Alina Dulgheriu has today filed for permission in the Court of Appeal to appeal the High Court’s decision to uphold the Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) implemented by Ealing Council in April. The Ealing PSPO criminalises prayer, offering of support and any act of approval/disapproval regarding abortion outside of the Mattock Lane abortion clinic.

The High Court had accepted that her rights to freedom of expression, freedom of religion and freedom of assembly had been infringed by the PSPO, but it ultimately decided to uphold the PSPO and dismiss the challenge.

Alina subsequently launched a crowdfunding campaign to raise £50,000 to fund the ongoing legal challenge, which has raised over £20,000 in under two weeks.

The Court of Appeal will now decide whether the High Court decision can be appealed.

Alina Dulgheriu, an Appellant in the case who was herself supported outside an abortion clinic, has released the following statement:

“I have sought permission to appeal the High Court decision because I believe the law has been misapplied and has allowed for the unjust criminalization of offers of support and silent prayer. This judgment will have devastating ramifications for hundreds of women and for society at large if it is allowed to stand.

I know how devastating the effect of this judgment will be because I received a loving offer of support when I needed it most, when I thought I had no other alternative. Without this simple offer, I would not have my beautiful 6 year old daughter today. Since then, I have been privileged to join a compassionate, loving group of citizens who offer this same help to mothers in similar circumstances.

Such offers of help have now been criminalised in Ealing on the basis of evidence that the High Court recognised was not of a criminal standard. Fundamental human rights, such as freedom of expression, the right to pray and the right to receive information have been undermined. How can we, as a society that recognises the value of these fundamental rights, allow this to happen?

For the sake of the vulnerable women who now will not be able to access the loving help I did, and for the sake of the fundamental freedoms that our society holds so dear, I have asked the Court of Appeal for permission to appeal. This step simply would have not been possible without the incredible support of over 400 people who have donated on the crowdfunding page. I am so grateful for their generous support.”