Media Release 15 August 2018
The Law Commission under the Official Information Act has released to Right to Life information on the written submissions received by the Law Commission from the community on the review of the abortion laws in New Zealand.
The President of the Law Commission, Sir Douglas White has advised Right to Life on 14 August, that a total of 3,419 submissions have been received. The issue was set out by the Minister of Justice, Andrew Little in a letter to Sir Douglas dated 27 February; The government is considering how best to ensure New Zealand’s abortion laws are consistent with treating abortion as a health issue. It was the wish of the Prime Minister that abortion be taken out of the Crimes Act and treated as “a reproductive choice for women.” The killing of the unborn child was no longer going to be treated as a crime.
A total of 73.5 per cent of submissions which addressed the issue, opposed the decriminalisation of abortion and only 26.5 per cent of submissions which addressed the issue supported the decriminalisation of abortion.
Of the 2,278 submissions which addressed the issue, the Commission identified 603 that supported treating abortion as a health issue and/or removing abortion from the Crimes Act and 1,675 as opposing changes to the current criminal offences and/or opposing decriminalisation. The remaining 1,141 submissions did not address the issue. We are advised by the Law Commission that many of these 1,141 submissions supported protection for the unborn child and their mothers, this group will be summarised and the summary will be provided to the Minister of Justice in October. In the meantime there will be no information provided to the public on this summary until the Minister is advised.
Right to Life believes that this information provides conclusive evidence that the majority of the community are adamantly opposed to treating the killing of defenceless unborn children as a health issue and support protection for the lives of our unborn provided by the Crimes Act in sections 182, Killing of Unborn Child and 183 Procuring abortion by any means.
Right to Life earnestly requests that the government recognise and acknowledge that the government has no mandate from the people of New Zealand to remove the unborn who are classified as “unwanted “ from the protection of the Crimes Act where they have been protected since 1856, in order that it might facilitate the killing of these children as a health issue.
Right to Life also encourages the government to recognise that the first and only duty of government is to protect the lives of every member of the community from conception to natural death and not to preside over their destruction. It should recognise that the unborn child is the weakest and most defenceless member of the human family and deserves our respect and effective legal protection. Pregnancy is not a disease and abortion is not health care. It should also recognise that the sexualisation of our youth with Family Planning style comprehensive sex education programmes and the seductive “safe sex” message is promoting promiscuity, pregnancies outside of marriage and abortions.
Right to Life