Justice Minister Amy Adams rejects calls for abortion reform

applause-signStuff.co.nz 9 December 2016
Family First Comment: More good news – and more reasons that the Greens are unelectable…
“The Greens are the only political party in New Zealand that backs comprehensive abortion reform. Other politicians are happy with current abortion law, among them Justice Minister Adams.
“Abortion is a deeply personal issue and has traditionally been left as a conscience issue for MPs, and that’s appropriate,” Adams said. “Wholesale reform of abortion law is not something I’m currently looking at.”
#chooselife

Justice Minister Amy Adams is ruling out abortion reform, as thousands sign a petition calling for an overhaul of New Zealand’s legislation.

Abortions are still illegal under the Crimes Act, and may only be carried out if pregnancy poses a risk to the physical or mental health of the mother.

They are also permitted in cases of incest or fetal abnormality, but there’s no exception for rape victims.

Student Sarah Batkin, 23, launched the petition on Change.org to raise awareness of the murky legal status around abortion.

“My tactic is to make a big fuss, and bring it into New Zealand’s collective consciousness,” she said.

Batkin said it was particularly offensive that people had to turn to their mental health to justify having an abortion.

“I think it’s dishonest and quite cruel actually to make women pretend that they’re mentally unwell,” she said.

Learne McArthur of Christchurch signed Batkin’s petition, and described how she found herself in that position.

“When I had my abortion, I had never been clearer in my thinking, yet I was compelled to say my mental health was at risk from the pregnancy,” she wrote.

“Two very sane and reasonable doctors were compelled to lie in order to support me.”

Jan Logie, Green spokeswoman for women’s issues, said it made no sense to make people fake their mental health.

“There’s a degree of dishonesty in the current system, and that doesn’t serve anyone,” she said.

“People want to live with integrity, and we should be supporting that.”

The Greens are the only political party in New Zealand that backs comprehensive abortion reform.

Other politicians are happy with current abortion law, among them Justice Minister Adams.

“Abortion is a deeply personal issue and has traditionally been left as a conscience issue for MPs, and that’s appropriate,” Adams said.

“Wholesale reform of abortion law is not something I’m currently looking at.”

Abortions peaked at 18,511 in 2003 but have been steadily dropping since then, aside from a brief increase in 2005 and 2006.

There were 13,155 abortions performed in New Zealand in 2015.
READ MORE: http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/87373287/justice-minister-amy-adams-rejects-calls-for-abortion-reform

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