Meet Exeter’s brand new Pro-Choice Society
The society was approved by the Guild on Wednesday!
Exeter University’s Pro-Choice Society was set up at the beginning of this month and became Guild-affiliated on Wednesday afternoon.
The society’s committee is made up of four women who aim to “give a voice to the uterus owners of Exeter without feeling the fear of judgement”.
Following the student-led protests and petitions in response to the Guild’s affiliation of Exeter Students For Life Society, Exeter Pro-Choice Society wanted to make it clear that they do not exist “as some sort of retaliation.” The committee members shared their thoughts on their Instagram page, stating that they, “aim to educate and promote the right to choice as well as create a community to uplift each other and stand together.”
On the society’s Instagram page, Committee President Laura states that “being pro-choice is about supporting the ownership over one’s body. I believe that everyone and anyone deserves the right. We should never shame someone for making a medical decision they needed to make but instead support them and show them that no matter what you’re 100 per cent on their side because it’s THEIR body and it’s THEIR choice.”
Vice-President Chiara says that she’s “pro choice because women deserve the right to voice their opinion and to do what they want with their bodies, in every aspect of their lives. Women’s rights have evolved but there’s still a long way to go, and I want to make sure I can participate in the movement in any way I can.”
Treasurer Lauren believes that “pro-choice is a movement steeped in history, yet still uterus bearers around the world are kept from having rights to their own body. It is vital that those with a uterus come together to protect our rights to our bodily autonomy. Pro-choice represents liberation, empowerment, a sense of community and gender equality. Abortions are healthcare, and abortion rights are human rights.”
Campaigns/Publicity Officer Amy states that “there is no doubt that abortion rights have played a huge part in the subjugation of all those who own a uterus. Even today that right continues to be questioned and controlled. As a society, we will not stand for the questioning of bodily autonomy, and we will advocate for such a freedom to choose in a safe and respectful environment. I am pro-choice because I will always stand in solidarity with all those who make the decision to have an abortion; to exercise their right to decide what they do with their own body. EMPOWER ALL.”
The Tab Exeter spoke to committee members of Exeter Pro-Choice Society at Sit Down n Shut Up’s protest on campus last week. They responded to the criticism over the “freedom of speech” of the Pro-Life society by arguing that whilst we’re all entitled to our own opinions, it is unfair to force them on everyone else.
“Is there any point in graduating and getting a job if we don’t have rights?” they asked us. “The Guild’s permitting of this group to continue is cultivating a dangerous point of view where men think they have ownership over our bodies.”