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I came across a surprising statistic today. Of course, starting a… - Sally's Journal
October 3rd, 2007
11:13 pm

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I came across a surprising statistic today. Of course, starting a post with "gosh, what a surprising statistic" is never going to get unbiased poll results, but I thought I'd have a go anyway.

Given that there are about 600,000 live births in England annually


Go on, have a guess. You could look it up, but that would spoil all my fun.

So how many adoptions of under 1's are there (were there in England in the financial year 2006/07)?

Under 2000
28(32.9%)
2000 - 5000
22(25.9%)
5000 - 10000
13(15.3%)
10000 - 20000
10(11.8%)
20000 - 50000
4(4.7%)
50000 - 100000
7(8.2%)
100000 - 150000
1(1.2%)
150000 - 200000
0(0.0%)
200000 - 300000
0(0.0%)
More than 300000
0(0.0%)

How many abortions are there? (were there in England in 2006)

Under 2000
4(4.7%)
2000 - 5000
1(1.2%)
5000 - 10000
6(7.1%)
10000 - 20000
9(10.6%)
20000 - 50000
17(20.0%)
50000 - 100000
12(14.1%)
100000 - 150000
11(12.9%)
150000 - 200000
13(15.3%)
200000 - 300000
6(7.1%)
More than 300000
6(7.1%)

(18 comments | Leave a comment)

Comments
 
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From:aiwendel
Date:October 3rd, 2007 11:32 pm (UTC)
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hmmm have spectacularly failed to find the info on the net... what's the answer??
(Deleted comment)
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From:randomchris
Date:October 4th, 2007 08:24 am (UTC)
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It depends on what you count as an abortion, as well - do those include sales of the morning-after pill? If you're including only those carried out by a doctor, then I'd say 2000-5000, but if you add in those induced by the morning-after pill that must add another several thousand.
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From:atreic
Date:October 4th, 2007 08:46 am (UTC)
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I came across some interesting evidence when hanging around on abortion_debate that the latest scientific studies don't show the morning after pill preventing implantation - they only show it preventing ovulation. Which is different to how I was taught it worked when younger, but would mean it didn't induce abortion in any meaningful way. (Whether the technical definition that abortion is only the removal of an implanted foetus or your definition that it's anything to affect the fertalised egg is another debate)
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From:woodpijn
Date:October 4th, 2007 08:51 am (UTC)
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I'm guessing low adoption and high abortion, because adoption is so heavily bureacratised, and because I've heard high numbers bandied about wrt abortion although I can't remember exactly what they were.

Presumably the actual results will come out in a subsequent post after more people have had time to vote.
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From:atreic
Date:October 4th, 2007 09:15 am (UTC)
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That was my plan. Although I'm also waiting because I was so surprised by one of the numbers that I've emailed the person who does the data about it to check that I haven't misinterpreted it. When she gets back to me I'll probably post the answer.
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From:rmc28
Date:October 4th, 2007 10:38 am (UTC)
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Especially adoption of babies under 1: the pill & its successors have really cut the supply of babies for adoption in the last 50 years, and (almost) everybody wanting to adopt wants babies.

A few years ago I heard the fairly shocking statistic that, for teenage girls in the UK, there were 50,000 abortions a year and the same number of pregnancies carried to term. So half the teenage pregnancies were being aborted. We so need to do better by our young women (and men) when it comes to sex education (see also Stephen Fry's documentary on AIDS this week and next).

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From:ixwin
Date:October 4th, 2007 11:22 am (UTC)
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As well as the pill etc, there are also the factors of a) the increased social acceptability of teenage motherhood and b) social services trying to support parents who are having problems to allow them to keep their baby - which means that unless the parents are really really abusive or incompetent, the baby will probably already be over one by the time all interventions have been tried & have failed.
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From:ixwin
Date:October 4th, 2007 11:23 am (UTC)
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Sorry - single motherhood, not teenage motherhood.
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From:phlebas
Date:October 4th, 2007 09:24 am (UTC)
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Is that adoption of English babies by English people, or would it include adopting from abroad (or adoption of English babies by people abroad, though I'd suspect that was less common)?
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From:woodpijn
Date:October 4th, 2007 09:42 am (UTC)
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I just thought - I've heard that some medical sources use "abortion" to include accidental miscarriages as well, whereas obviously most people use it to mean only deliberate terminations. Might be worth clarifying which meaning your statistic is using (although I'd guess the narrower meaning because it's harder to count miscarriages).
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From:atreic
Date:October 4th, 2007 10:30 am (UTC)
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Yes, the specific "I want to terminate my pregancy" (statistically known as "legally induced abortions") type of abortion
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From:aureo1e
Date:October 4th, 2007 11:30 am (UTC)
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Just googled the answers: my guesses were from a very hand-waving analysis and were and order of magnitude low on abortion and high on adoption.

Also interesting was the cost for adoptions (not that I specifically googled this, but that it was in one of the results I found).
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From:half_of_monty
Date:October 4th, 2007 11:52 am (UTC)
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(From one case I know of) sometimes the new-born baby whose parents have put it up for adoption lives with foster parents for a year, before being properly adopted. So would not appear in your stats.

Have no idea how common this is, nor why it happens (I thought there were long queues of couples pre-vetted and waiting to adopt new-born babies).

OTOH heard a terrifying Radio 4 programme recently about how targets to increase levels of adoption in the last couple of years have led to lots and lots more babies being adopted (being much easier to find adoptive parents for than older children), because their parents had been deemed a risk for some reason - the examples given in the programme were all a bit tenuous, and adoptions were being completed while the birth parents were still appealing.
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From:ashfae
Date:October 4th, 2007 02:03 pm (UTC)
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Do we get the results?

(I confess I was stabbing in the dark)
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From:randomchris
Date:October 5th, 2007 07:39 am (UTC)
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I kind of want to make a tasteless comment here, given the subject matter...
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From:ashfae
Date:October 5th, 2007 08:37 pm (UTC)
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Thank you for refraining.
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From:lavendersparkle
Date:October 4th, 2007 09:57 pm (UTC)
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I thought 150000-200000 because I remember hearing that about 1 in 4 US pregnancies ends in abortion and I thought the UK abortion rate was a little lower so 150000-200000 seemed a good bet. I went for 2000-5000 for adoptions because I thought the number would be low but I think that you're the kind of person who would prefer not to make the answer the lowest bracket.

Hmm, I think maybe I need a pro-life/abortion icon for when I discuss these things. The knitted uterus will have to do for now.
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