Media Release 26 October 2018
The Law Commission’s report portrays a day of infamy, betrayal, shameful injustice and the denial of the dignity of women and of motherhood. It is also a callous denial of the humanity of our precious unborn and their inalienable right to life. Shame on this government that tramples on the human rights of our precious unborn and the right of women to be protected from the violence of abortion, it has forfeited its right to govern.
The report of the Law Commission on recommendations for taking abortion law out of the Crimes Act and treating it as a health issue, was presented to the Minister of Justice. The review had been requested by the Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, who has abandoned protecting women.
The government has no mandate from the people of New Zealand to remove women and their unborn from the protection of the Crimes Act. There is to be no public consultation or debate about the contents of the review prior to the government presenting a bill to Parliament.
The Law Commission have advised Right to Life under the Official Information Act that there were 3,419 submissions received on the review of the abortion laws in New Zealand. There were 1,677 submissions opposed to removing women and their unborn children from the protection of the Crimes Act, which since 1856 has recognised the killing of an unborn child in an abortion as a serious crime and violence against women. There were only 603 submissions that supported making the killing of an unborn child in abortions a health issue and a choice for women. The authentic feminist position is to oppose the decriminalisation of abortion.
A huge majority of the submissions, 69 %, were opposed to the decriminalisation of abortion, with 49 % specifically supporting retaining abortion in the Crimes Act with an additional 20% supporting legal protection for the child in the womb. The remaining 13% did not address the issue of decriminalisation.
The three legal models presented by the Commission represent an unprecedented attack on the sanctity of life of the unborn child, the weakest and most defenceless member of our human family. These proposals constitute an unprincipled denial of the humanity of the child in the womb.
The models proposed provide for the unborn, deemed by the mother as unwanted, to be removed from the protection of the Crimes Act, Part VIII Crimes against the person which recognises abortion as violence against the mother and the unborn. It states that abortion is a serious crime that on conviction the accused may be imprisoned for up to 14 years. The models provide for the killing of the unborn, effectively up to birth, to be a reproductive health issue of choice for the woman.
It will then be no longer a crime to kill an unborn child, but a health service. This is a blatant lie perpetrated on women.
It is the duty of the state to protect the lives of every member of our community from conception to natural death and not to preside over their destruction. The decriminalisation of abortion will allow the government to declare that they have no interest in protecting the lives of New Zealanders in the first nine months of their lives and that they are prepared to preside over their destruction.
The Law Commission proposes that doctors “who do not wish to provide health services in connection with abortion because of a conscientious objection to refer women to someone who can provide the service.” The unborn child is a patient and doctors have an absolute right to refuse to be involved in the killing of another human being.
The government admits that it has no evidence to substantiate the claim that in a modern society it should not be a crime to kill an unborn child.The government intends to replace truth and justice with personal opinion, which is the basis of the advocacy of the Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern and the Hon. Andrew Little for the decriminalisation of abortion.
Right to Life requests that the Labour Party return to the high social principles of its founders to uphold the sanctity of life ethic and to protect the lives of the most vulnerable members of our community.
Right to Life