Were 2018 vigils “massively intimidating”?


On 25 July 2018 Councillor Claire Miller was quoted by the Edinburgh Evening News in relation to abortion clinic vigils:

“The next step will be to work with partners. It’s not ideal, but we just need to build the evidence and have a robust way of presenting it.”

“I don’t think some people realise what it can be like for these people. It can be massively intimidating.”



Police Scotland

In Freedom of Information response IM-FOI-2018-1787 dated 10 September 2018 Police Scotland said there were “no incidents reported” relating to harassment, intimidation or public disorder for the approx 12 month period from 1 July 2017 – 20 July 2018

NHS Lothian

In Freedom of Information response 3737 dated 20 August 2019 NHS Lothian said “there is no record on Datix” (an incident management system) relating to vigil groups for the approx 18 month period from 1 January 2018 – 30 June 2019

Cllr Miller did not respond to a request to comment

Conclusion: INCORRECT

Police Scotland and NHS Lothian FOIs are reliable and credible sources and contradict Cllr Miller’s statement. Their responses would be acceptable to most people as “robust” sources of evidence. Statements from both organisations cover periods around the time that Cllr Miller made her claim. Cllr Miller did not provide any examples to support her claim. This claim is therefore rated as INCORRECT.