A South London MP has called for anti-abortion protesters to be banned from outside a Brixton clinic.

MP for Streatham Bell Ribeiro-Addy wants Lambeth Council to introduce a buffer zone around the Marie Stopes International [MSI] centre in Brixton Hill.

Ribeiro-Addy said pro-life campaigners had been seen outside the centre several times over the last few weeks.

She added there had also been a surge of people contacting her concerned about the protesters. 

The Labour MP wants Lambeth Council to introduce a buffer zone around the treatment centre in Brixton Hill through a Public Space Protection Order [PSPO].

PSPOs – which are normally used to combat antisocial behaviour – give councils the power to ban certain activities or behaviour in local areas. 

In this case, protesters would be banned from the vicinity of the clinic. Those who break a PSPO can face a £100 on-the-spot fine or up to £1,000 fine if taken to court. 

In a letter from October 26, Ribeiro-Addy writes: “I would like to ask that Lambeth Council follow in the footsteps of other London boroughs and introduce a Public Spaces Protection Order [PSPO] outside the Marie Stopes clinic, and other abortion clinics within the borough.

“Over the past few weeks, I have received a notable increase in constituents contacting me to make me aware of protests taking place outside the Marie Stopes clinic, and my staff have also witnessed several of these protests taking place outside the clinic. 

“As I am sure you are aware, these forms of protest are very distressing and intimidating to the women accessing the clinic who are having to make a difficult decision or trying to seek medical services and advice.”

MPs voted to enforce buffer zones around abortion clinics across England and Wales in October, but the proposed law still has to get approval from the House of Lords.

Harassing, obstructing or interfering with a woman attending an abortion clinic would become illegal within 150 metres of the clinic under the proposals. 

Lambeth Council has set up an online form where the public can report protests or incidents of harassment outside the clinic anonymously.

Cllr Marcia Cameron, Labour cabinet member for healthier communities, said the information collected would allow the council to decide whether extra measures were needed.

Speaking at a council meeting on October 19, she said: “We liaise with police colleagues to collect data on activity.

"We will also collect and collate data on incidents in partnership with the British Pregnancy Advisory Service and the Marie Stopes International to understand [the] developing position faced by staff [and] service users.

“The Violence Against Women and Girls team have contacted those who have completed the online form in the past two weeks and requested them to provide an impact statement.

"We should have evidence regarding the impact, which will inform appropriate and proportionate future action.”

Louise McCudden, MSI UK’s advocacy and public affairs advisor, said: “We are delighted that MPs voted in favour of national buffer zones.

"While that legislation makes its way through Parliament, our frontline team members appreciate any expressions of support, especially those at our Brixton clinic where anti-choice activity has risen significantly in recent months.”