Angry Glasgow medic confronts supporters of a Texas-based anti-abortion group outside a hospital

40 Days for Life, which cruelly harasses women outside abortion facilities in the US and beyond, has a very far reach.

Supporters of this aggressive outfit, led by Rose Docherty, above, showed up outside a maternity ward at Glasgow’s Queen Elizabeth University Hospital this week to hold a vigil.

There they were confronted by Dr Greg Irwin who ordered them to stop harassing patients.

According to The Daily Record, he told the group:

You are upsetting my patients and you are upsetting my staff. What you are doing is very unkind and I would like you to stop … I know you acting out in Christian faith, which says we should love one another. You are not being loving to these people. You are not showing them the respect that they deserve. You need to stop coming to my hospital, this is not fair.

Dr Irwin confronting one of anti-abortion zealots. Screenshot credit: Daily Record/Ruth Suter/Reach PLC.

The campaigners merely grinned inanely at the medic and stood their ground.

Docherty previously told the Record she was recruited by the American religious group “through the pro-life grapevine’. She claimed the group stands across from facilities offering to “help” women who she believes may be “coerced” into abortion.

During their vigil a vehicle slowed down and a driver shouted “fuck off you bunch of lunatics”.

‘Untold levels of harm’

Lucy Grieve, co-founder of Back Off Scotland, a group campaigning for harassment-free buffer zones around clinics, described the scenes as “unfair”.

She said:

These protests need to stop—they are causing untold levels of harm to patients and medical staff across Scotland. We have heard from hundreds of women who have been adversely affected by them, and it’s not fair that they are unable to access healthcare free from harassment.

The protesters keep talking about their right to freedom of speech—but what about a patient’s right to medical privacy? We need legislation to be brought forward immediately to put an end to this.

Image via Youtube

Labour MSP Monica Lennon, above, added:

It’s harrowing to see another 40-day anti-abortion protest gearing up in Scotland.

This is being dressed up as prayer, but we know it’s bad for the privacy and well-being of women. The Scottish Government knew this was coming, yet no additional safeguards are in place to protect those accessing vital healthcare services.

Testimonies gathered by Back Off Scotland have revealed the traumatising and long-lasting effects of clinic harassment. We wouldn’t put up with this in any other health setting.

The Scottish Government must ensure the legal right to abortion care is accessed without intimidation or harassment.

With every other UK nation pushing ahead with safe access zone legislation, I hope this will be a wakeup call for the Scottish Government to introduce these measures as soon as possible.

A spokesperson for NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde said:

Our number one priority is the safety and security of our patients and staff. The site, targeted by protesters, offers a full range of healthcare services.

As a healthcare provider we firmly believe all our patients should be free to attend for treatment and our staff should be able to deliver care without fear or intimidation.

Image via YouTube

Public Health Minister Maree Todd, above, said:

There is no place for this in modern Scotland. It is unacceptable for women to face any fear of harassment or intimidation when accessing essential healthcare services …

People have a right to protest in a democracy, however, no one has the right to intimidate or impede women’s right to access healthcare. The Scottish Government believes protests should be held in a more appropriate place, such as outside parliament.

On its website 40 Days for Life boasts that it has succeeded in shutting down over 100 abortion facilities and has documented saving thousands of “babies.”

In addition to the babies, over 200 abortion workers have quit their jobs and walked away from the abortion industry and thousands of women have been spared the suffering and trauma that comes with the decision to abort one’s own child.

It complains that, in recent years, many provincial governments have passed:

Draconian laws criminalizing pro-life expression (and even silent prayer) within 50 metres (or more) of an abortion facility. These are totalitarian anti pro-life speech laws which deny women in crisis alternatives to abortion and criminalize pro-life outreach and assistance. 

In a 2013 article, The Guardian quoted a Marie Stopes spokesperson as saying that the group has been dubbed “40 Days of Lies” for handing out “misleading information. Its leaflets are saturated in emotive language about “your tiny baby”.

Its pseudo-medical statements imply that abortions often cause “serious physical complications”.

These leaflets, plus T-shirts and other crap, are a being sold on the 40 Days of Life on-line store.

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If you spot any typos in this piece, please email me at

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7 responses to “Angry Glasgow medic confronts supporters of a Texas-based anti-abortion group outside a hospital”

  1. These anti abortionists are ignorant, loathsome, religious crackpots. They have no right to upset patients and medical staff with their lies. They should be treated severely by the law before they start getting away with their behaviour. Stick a few of them behind bars for assault, and they are assaulting patients and medical staff.

    I’m surprised how calm Dr Irwin managed to remain when confronted with that smirking moron. The government are very quick to use the police, or even the army, to dispel climate change protestors. Let us have some similar action here. I suppose vigorous action is dependent on how many of the government agree with the protestors.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Exactly, and Monica Lennon is right (” We wouldn’t put up with this in any other health setting”). It’s because it’s abortion and many people have sympathy with the views of these imbeciles. NO ONE facing medical treatment should be confronted by this sort of intimidation; it is totally unacceptable.


    2. “smirking moron” is now added to the quote file, fits well with:
      “Did you or didn’t you go to a big party in your garden, you smirking fibreglass toby jug?” – Marina Hyde
      “This smirking ignorance…” – Aditya Chakrabortty re BoJo


  2. “She claimed the group stands across from facilities offering to ‘help’ women who she believes may be ‘coerced’ into abortion.”

    It’s Cool Hand Luke again: “I wish you’d stop being so good to me, Captain”.

    These idiots can pray, fast, hold “vigils”, flagellate themselves, do whatever they like, in the privacy of their homes, in their vain attempt to bend the ear of their “god”, so why do they feel the need to make such a public display? It’s the precise opposite of what Jesus commanded them to do!


    1. The idea of women being coerced into abortion is a bit rich. Many of these women want a baby but are faced with producing a badly deformed, or even dead, child. The mothers have enough to endure with these ignorant, hag ridden religious creeps.


    1. Dr Greg Irwin deserves a medal for keeping his cool when confronting these louts.

      Liked by 1 person

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