Right to Life welcomes the judgment of Justice Miller. This is an historic judgment and the most important development in the abortion laws in New Zealand during the previous 30 years. The implementation of this judgment by the Abortion Supervisory Committee should result in a substantial reduction in the number of abortions performed in New Zealand and bring the law back into line with the intentions of the Royal Commission and Parliament. The judgment should herald in a new era of care and protection of women and their unborn children.
Judicial Review – Abortion Supervisory Committee
The hearing of the Judicial Review of the performance of the Abortion Supervisory Committee was heard in the High Court in
The proceedings for this review were filed in the High Court on 19th May 2005. On the 30th June the Crown filed an application to have our claim struck out as being unnecessary and vexatious. On October 11 Justice Wild struck out two of the six grounds filed in Right to Life’s statement of claim. Our amended statement of claim listed the following issues that we sought relief for:
Right to Life deplores the government’s opposition to Gordon Copeland’s abortion [Informed Consent] Bill being introduced into Parliament for debate.
Gordon Copeland, Independent MP is commended for seeking leave of the House in his general debate speech on the 9th April to have his important Bill introduced. Its introduction required leave of the House; it is disappointing that several Labour MPs objected.
The government’s opposition to this Bill is consistent with its position since assuming office. Since 1999 this Labour government has presided over the destruction of over 140,000 unborn New Zealanders. Last year the government paid certifying consultants over $5 million in fees for authorising nearly 18,000 abortions. The highest paid consultant received $223,800 in fees for authorising 1685 abortions, he declined only 7. (ie less than half of one percent).
The Royal College of Psychiatrists on 14 March issued a position statement on “Women’s mental health in Relation to Induced Abortion.” The statement said that
women who want to have an abortion should undergo counselling if doctors have concern for their mental health.”Healthcare professionals who assess or refer women who are requesting an abortion should assess for mental disorder and for risk factors that may be associated with its subsequent development. This position statement replaces the College’s position adopted in 1994 and is a complete reversal of their position on abortion; it then stated that abortions did not result in mental ill health for women.
The new position statement reflects the increasing concern among members of the Psychiatric profession at the damage that is being inflicted on women as a result of abortion. This evidence is being given to psychiatrists by wounded and hurt women who have experienced an abortion and are seeking help.
Click this link to visit a New York Times article on new research on how unborn children experience pain in the womb
The information was recently provided by the Abortion Supervisory Committee to Right to Life under the Official Information Act.
A total of 44 of these children had a gestational age of 22 weeks or more. Many of these children if born alive could with proper medical care have survived. The Ministry of Health does not keep records of babies born alive from an abortion. A recent United Kingdom [UK] report has shown that babies who survive abortion attempts in the UK are often left to die. According to a government report there were 66 infants in one year that survived a National Health Service abortion. In Britain the report shows that once a child is condemned to death by abortion is born alive, no medical help is offered the child. On the contrary guidelines from the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists offered doctors the recommendation that babies over 22 weeks old who survive abortion be killed by lethal injection. Does the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians And Gynaecologists support this recommendation?
Dear Sir Abortion Consultants
It is scandalous that certifying consultants were paid $5 million last year for authorising abortions. The top 10 consultants received between $120,000 and $224,000. Two consultants are required for each abortion and each claim a fee of $135 for a cursory consultation of 10 to 15 minutes. There were nearly 18,000 abortions in 2006. The law requires two consultants to ensure that abortions comply with the law and are authorised only after full regard is given to the rights of the unborn child. The most important right is the child’s right to life. The Abortion Supervisory Committee concedes that 98% of abortions are authorised on the grounds that the continued existence of the child is a severe threat to the mental health of the mother. The Committee believes that mental health grounds are used by consultants to provide abortion on demand for socio economic reasons, this is unlawful. It is a scandalous injustice that doctors are being paid by a complicit government to deprive our nations children of their right to life by falsehood and violating the law. Since 1999 the Helen Clark government has shamefully presided in silence over the destruction of 140,000 innocent and defenceless unborn children.
Right to Life New Zealand Inc.
An important study conducted in the United States in 2004 found that 64 per cent of those women surveyed reported that they were pressured by others to have an abortion. Many abortions are the result of pressure, emotional blackmail, coercion, threats, or violence from boyfriends, parents, employers, doctors, counsellors or from other people of influence in the woman’s lives. Right to Life believes that a similar situation prevails in New Zealand.
Having abortion on demand has made it easy for others to bring pressure and even force women and girls into having an abortion they do not want. The great majority of women if provided with real support, options, and resources to allow their children to be born will continue with their pregnancy. In some cases women have been assaulted and even murdered by the father of their child. In the United States murder is the leading cause of death among pregnant women. A 22 year old male is currently before the High Court in Auckland charged with procuring an abortion after violently assaulting a 17 year old girl with the objective of causing a miscarriage.
Inadequate, inaccurate or deceptive counselling can also act as a form of coercion. A woman’s right to choose is touted as a woman’s right. This is a monumental lie. For many men who wish to escape their responsibilities towards the mother and the child that he has fathered, abortion becomes their choice. This is a violation of the human rights of the vulnerable woman and her child in the womb. Women deserve better, they deserve to have the law protect their right of women not to be pressured, coerced, or even violently forced into unwanted and dangerous abortions.
Right to Life recognises the right of women to receive the full protection of the law from being coerced into an unwanted abortion. Our Society will now lobby Parliament to promote the necessary law change. A petition has been prepared to present to Parliament. Citizens concerned about the coercion imposed on women are invited to sign a petition displayed under the abortion link on our Society’s web site at www.right-to-life.org