Mencap, the learning disability charity, said that it was disgusted and horrified at Geoffrey Clark's comments. Mark Goldring, chief executive of Mencap, said:
Subject to the provisions of this section, a person shall not be guilty of an offence under the law relating to abortion when a pregnancy is terminated by a registered medical practitioner if two registered medical practitioners are of the opinion, formed in good faith -
Changes were made to the Abortion Act 1967 through the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 1990. The time limits were lowered from 28 to 24 weeks. Restrictions were removed for late abortions in cases of risk to life, fetal abnormality, or grave physical and mental injury to the woman.
Only 'point (a)' of the original mainland UK law on abortion is subject to the 24 week ruling. Doctors will readily acknowledge that the continuance of a pregnancy is always more dangerous to the physical welfare of a woman than having an abortion. This position allows for de-facto abortion on demand beyond 24 weeks.