'Pregnancy Crisis Services' in Malta
Although it may sound like a well intentioned service - helping women who have financial and social problems and are struggling during pregnancy - a number of "pregnancy crisis" and "pregnancy support" services in Malta are run by anti-choice groups. Here are a few examples:
Life Line Malta, a hotline offering "pregnancy crisis support" is an initiative of the anti-choice organisation LifeNetwork foundation. The shelter Dar Tgħannieqa t'Omm (Mother's Embrace Home) is also administered by this organisation. It is also a known fact that Life Network is affiliated with Agenda Europe (it says so on their website). Agenda Europe is an extremist political network that aims to roll back human rights and equality protections across Europe. They are against LGBTIQ+ rights and protections, as well as against contraception, the choice of abortion, and reproductive technologies like IVF.
Life Line Malta's website also has clear links with the American anti-choice organisation Heartbeat International and its service Option Line. Heartbeat International is described on Wikipedia as "an international Christian association that supports crisis pregnancy centers (CPC). It does not offer, recommend, or refer for abortions. Heartbeat International teaches its affiliated members to make their advertising look as though they are full-service clinics that provide referrals for birth control or abortion. Staff are also trained on how to discourage pregnant women from accessing abortion, and how to discourage young women from using emergency contraception, birth control pills, or IUDs."
HOPE pregnancy crisis support service is administered by the anti-choice organisation Gift of Life Malta.
The aim of certain 'pregnancy crisis services' is often to prevent abortions, and there have been reports of women being intimidated after contacting certain services in Malta to prevent them from getting abortions. Vulnerable women contacting such services may not be fully aware of their true intentions and agenda, and may think that such services will offer unbiased information on all pregnancy options including on how to get an abortion. This is certainly not the case.
We want to make it clear that as an organisation we recommend that the public and especially vulnerable pregnant women stay away from such "pregnancy crisis services." If you really want to contact such services, be sure to check who runs them and what their values are.
To read more about how you can get psychological, financial, or social help during pregnancy read this article by FPAS Malta by clicking here.