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UK News

Pro-life student midwife who faced university suspension secures payout and apology

A Catholic pro-life midwifery student, who faced suspension from midwifery studies and a fitness-to-practise investigation, has won an apology and a payout from her university.

Julia Rynkiewicz, who's 25 and served as president of 'Nottingham Students for Life,' a pro-life student society faced expulsion from her degree at Nottingham University after lecturers raised concerns about her fitness to practice, as reported by The Telegraph.

Concerns by the university had centred on her public association with the society, which was initially denied affiliation by Nottingham University's Students' Union, along with material available at the society's freshers' fair stall.

Although university officials later U-turned on their decision and dismissed the case against her, Ms Rynkiewicz filed a formal complaint with the university, after believing that she was unfairly targeted for her beliefs.

According to The Telegraph, Nottingham University has now settled with Ms Rynkiewicz, who's from southeast London.

"What happened to me risks creating a fear among students to discuss their values and beliefs, but university should be the place where you are invited to do just that," Ms Rynkiewicz said.

In a statement a University of Nottingham spokesperson said: "While all universities take fitness-to-practice considerations extremely seriously, the university has offered an apology and settlement to Ms Rynkiewicz and is considering how we might approach such cases differently in future.

"The university and Students' Union supports the rights of all students to bodily autonomy and access to safe, legal abortion services, which is the position in law.

"Universities should be spaces to debate, discuss and disagree points of view, and with more than 200 student societies, covering the full range of beliefs and perspectives, we are confident this is the case at Nottingham."
 

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