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Wells lacks any knowledge of rape trauma

I am rather intrigued by the comments of Jim Wells MLA, of the DUP, quoted in your article headlined 'Change in statistics will not halt clampdown on abortions' (News, August 23).

The law as it currently stands in Northern Ireland clearly states that abortion is only permitted to save the potential mother's life, or to protect her from her from long-term physical, or mental, health damage. In your article, Mr Wells says: "Abnormality of the foetus is not a reason for an abortion in Northern Ireland and neither is rape."

For Jim Wells to uphold the law, this means that rape - in his view - never results into long-term mental health damage.

Medical professionals, collected data on the correlation between rape and mental health problems, and individuals whom he may count among his voters, would disagree with this view.

I can only interpret Mr Wells's statements to mean that he is offering a reading of the law which its wording doesn't support, that he's lacking knowledge on health matters (which casts doubts on his suitability to sit on the Stormont health committee), or that he is willfully ignoring the medical data to suit his own agenda. I can't make out which it is.

Would the Belfast Telegraph be willing to invite him for an interview with a medical health professional specialised in rape cases, a legal professional in UK law and a rape victim? It would make for an enlightening read.



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