It has been just over a week since the Law Commission’s report on alternative approaches to abortion law was presented to the Government and released to the public. The Commission suggest three models of lawful abortion provision, threatening pre-born children from conception right up until birth.
Requested by Andrew Little, Justice Minister, the review was to assist the Government in making a policy shift in removing abortion from the Crimes Act and treating it as a health issue.
The report paves the way for the Labour Government to easily carry out their reform making the deadly procedure another health service, easily accessible, and a matter between a woman and her doctor. This is a tragedy firstly for the babies whose right to life is stripped violently away from them; for women who suffer the short and long-term consequences of abortion physically, psychologically and spiritually; for men who regret their lost fatherhood; and for families torn by secrets, lies, brokenness and lost members.
Support for Labour’s proposed policy shift was limited in the submission process. A total of 3419 submissions were received. Information obtained through the Official Information Act by Ken Orr of Right to Life, revealed that 2280 (67%) of the submissions directly addressed the issue. Of those submissions only 603 supported the treatment of abortion as a health issue and/or removing it from the Crimes Act. Whereas 1677 opposed change to the current law and/or “decriminalisation” of abortion.
The Law Commission pressed forward presenting liberal models which include abortion on demand up to birth with no restrictions or checks. Such a model, as outlined below has the support of important medical bodies including the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, the New Zealand Nurses Organisation and the New Zealand College of Midwives.
The report encourages self-referral and an “elective” mentality which views the decision making process as being between a woman (mother) and her doctor. Medical Centres could double as abortion facilities with midwives and nurses administering the abortion pill (often referred to as RU-486). Family Planning, who presently operates one abortion facility in Tauranga, could become the New Zealand version of the US Planned Parenthood, providing abortions on the doorsteps of high schools throughout the country.
Current legislation (Crimes Act, 1961 and the Contraception, Sterilisation and Abortion Act, 1997) is far from adequate in protecting pre-born children. More than half a million babies have been aborted in its tenure. It does, at least in part, accept the truth that abortion takes the life of an unborn human being and as such must be treated as a crime when the (very liberal) law is not adhered to.
Placing abortion provision solely under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Health officially approves the most horrific violence to the most vulnerable among us, tiny babies who deserve to be cared for, protected and given every chance to live.
The three proposed models
The Law Commission proposed three models that would allow for abortion to be treated in law as a health issue. Each model allows for abortion on demand to some degree. The following is a summary. The chart from the report can be found on Family Life International’s website.
Model A: Abortion on demand up to birth. No statutory test required, no time limits. Abortion would be a decision between a woman and her doctor.
The Law Commission notes on page 77 of its report that “health practitioners and professional bodies… consulted were almost unanimous in supporting Model A”. This observation is further clarified in a footnote where those professional bodies are listed as the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RANZCOG), the New Zealand Nurses Organisation (NZNO), the New Zealand College of Midwives and the Abortion Providers Group Aotearoa New Zealand (APGANZ).
Model B: No time limits but a statutory test found in health legislation as opposed to the Crimes Act would be required. The test would need to satisfy the health practitioner (aka abortionist) that the abortion is appropriate in the circumstances, taking into consideration the woman’s physical, mental health and well-being. Non-compliance would not be a criminal offence.
Model C: Abortion on demand up to 22 weeks (as in Model A). After 22 weeks gestation the same statutory test as in Model B would be required.
What can we do?
Your voice matters! Babies lives depend on it. The well-being of women depends on it. Families depend on it.
Be as involved as you can …
- write letters to MPs and publication editors,
- post pro-life material on social media,
- invite one of our team to come and speak to your group,
- be there practically for pregnant and new mothers and families,
- be a witness to life on the street,
- most importantly PRAY. Prayer must be the beginning of all that we do to protect life and stave off the evil one who only wants to destroy life, made in the image and likeness of God.
- Join us and other pro-lifer’s from all over the country for the National March for Life on Saturday 8th December at 2pm in Wellington. This year’s March will be a very important witness to the groundswell of support in New Zealand for the protection of human life from conception and our desire to love both mum and baby. Be on the right side of history – be on the side of LIFE!
Thank you for your ongoing support and commitment to defend life from its very beginning and until its natural end. Together we will make a difference. Together we can defeat the anti-life agenda. Together we can save lives. But it requires courage, determination and perseverance.