From Abortion Executive to Pro-Life Advocate: a former international abortion worker speaks out.

Once a senior executive at one of the world’s largest abortion providers, Kevin Duffy is now exposing his former industry: written by Robert Colquhoun, Director of International Campaigns at 40 Days for Life.

Day 41: a publication of 40 Days for Life.

For many months, Kevin Duffy felt God pricking his conscience. He had been a Christian since he was 16 years old—but he earned a living exporting abortion to developing nations.

Kevin justified his career in the abortion industry—four years as a senior-level executive with the United Kingdom-based international abortion giant Marie Stopes International (MSI) and two more as an independent consultant—as a harm reduction strategy. In other words, women were going to have abortions regardless of the procedure’s legal status. Better to provide “safe, clean” abortion services than unsafe services outside a clinical setting.

As an MSI executive, Kevin was responsible for more than 550 clinics across 37 countries. In his new role as a consultant, he helped develop strategies to double the number of abortions MSI provided worldwide. But he found himself increasingly troubled by a growing sense that it wouldn’t be right for him to continue doing abortion work. That sense only increased as Kevin realized that the expansion of abortion in Africa wasn’t achieving his “harm-reduction” goal. It was creating a previously nonexistent market for the killing of unborn children.

“Life begins at conception, and none of us should ever be involved in supporting or enabling a woman to end that life,” Kevin said.

Convicted by his conscience, Kevin parted company with MSI in 2019 and began helping pro-life organizations in the UK. “I’ve come to realise that it is never right for a Christian to be working for an abortion provider,” Kevin said. “It is not something that can be justified or rationalised by saying, ‘Abortion wouldn’t be my choice, but women need safe, clean abortion services.’”

Since leaving the industry, Kevin has become one of the UK’s leading voices in exposing his former employer. In particular, he revealed that in 2015-16, the MSI board started to prioritize distribution of over-the-counter abortion pills through pharmacies. Under this “self-managed medical abortion” model, women order dangerous abortion pills over the internet without ever receiving a clinical assessment or comprehensive care.

“Women are not being well served and are missing out on essential clinical assessments. They are left to manage the expulsions on their own at home—and with no follow-up care afterwards. This is a long, long way from the comprehensive, safe abortion care that MSI claims to provide.”

So much for harm-reduction.

When pro-life advocates point out the risks and side-effects of dispensing abortion pills without a physical exam, abortion advocates simply respond, “Yes, but it’s better than using a sharp stick.”

After the UK made these telemedicine abortions legal, Kevin organized an undercover client investigation showing the gaps in safeguarding and compliance and has helped to call for telemedicine abortions to be ended immediately.

“Here are some tablets; the instructions are in the box,” Kevin commented. “With do-it-yourself abortions, a woman’s home is the new backstreet. Imagine having that as your global ‘healthcare’ strategy.”

Kevin’s perspective as an abortion industry insider also provides encouragement for pro-life advocates that their efforts are effective. He remembers clinic managers at MSI facilities in Kenya and Mexico complaining that 40 Days for Life vigils negatively impacted abortion numbers—and even resulted in clinics closing for extended periods of time.

That impact led MSI management teams to make heavy investments of time and money lobbying for buffer zones requiring pro-lifers to move their vigils far away from abortion facilities. Additionally, at abortion centers located in multipurpose facilities, vigils lead other tenants to complain about abortion services harming their own businesses.

Kevin believes 40 Days for Life vigils have a massive impact on staff who walk past them on a daily basis. The peaceful prayer presence affects morale and creates a stigma around abortion that drives the huge turnover and burnout rates of abortion facility staff.

Kevin found the film Unplanned similar to his own experience with the abortion industry, noting that the scene in which Abby is told that abortion is Planned Parenthood’s core service and primary income generator mirrors MSI’s business model.

“None of us should be compromising our faith or our walk with God by working for an abortion provider,” Kevin said. “Make today the day…and leave soon,” he exhorts other abortion industry staff.

To learn more about Kevin’s exodus from MSI and how 40 Days for Life vigils impact the abortion industry, visit 40daysforlife.com/podcast and select season 6, episode 11.

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