I wish to lodge a formal complaint against two articles written by Susan Strongman and published on 5th and 6th September. I believe that the articles breached Article I Accuracy, Fairness and Balance of the Media Council.
The articles demonstrate a biased preference for women killing their babies before birth. It is disappointing for our community that relies on Radio NZ for unbiased and accurate news and information to be presented with misleading information on a very important human rights issue. Radio NZ is a publicly funded broadcaster that is at the service of the community. I believe that Radio NZ should as a matter of public policy on highly contentious issues such as abortion, adopt a strictly neutral stance.
These inflammatory articles reflect support for women killing their children before birth. It would appear that a considerable amount of time and expense has been devoted to preparing these two major articles attacking Pregnancy Counselling Service (PCS) and Crisis Pregnancy Support (CPS). This suggests that Radio NZ has taken a position in support of the pro-death lobby which supports women having the right to kill their children before birth as a “reproductive choice for women.”
Your journalist has conveyed the message:-
- That women would be better served if these two counselling services did not exist.
- That the counselling services are failing women by not encouraging them to kill their children before birth.
- That these counselling services should not be receiving funding from COGS, because they are involved in political and religious activities.
- That the women providing counselling are not qualified to provide counselling, that they provide biased and misleading counselling.
- That there is no need for these counselling services as professional pregnancy counselling is provided free by District Health Boards.
The writer describes the counselling services as “anti-abortionist” this is the offensive and derogatory term used by the pro-death movement to denigrate and dismiss those who are opposed to the violent killing of unborn children who are the weakest and most defenceless members of the human family. The writer refuses to acknowledge that these counsellors are passionate in defending the lives of our unborn and the health and welfare of their mothers by refusing to use the term pro-life to describe them.
It is acknowledged that DHBs provide pregnancy counselling services. This service is available Monday to Friday during working hours. Women should have the right to have a choice as from whom they are going to seek help and counselling. PCS and CPS are available 24/7 and are ready day and night to provide comfort and support to vulnerable women in their hour of need. The DHB pregnancy counsellors are an integral part of the abortion industry and have a priority to reassure women that abortion is a health service which removes the contents of the uterus which is just a collection of cells. There is no baby involved in abortion as human life only begins at birth.
DHBs pregnancy counsellors provide only counselling and that, in the Board’s offices. PCS & CPS will provide counselling where ever the woman requests it. They will also provide bassinettes, baby clothes and other necessities. This practical help is not available from DHBs.
The writer claims that PCS & CPS should not receive funding from COGS because they are involved in political and religious activity. It is the democratic right of every citizen and organisation to make submissions to Parliamentary Select Committees. There is no prohibition on these organisations receiving financial donations from religious bodies.
The writer is attacking these counselling services for doing exactly what the pro-death lobby consistently accuses us of not doing, which is providing genuine care and options to pregnant women in need. This is in contrast with Family Planning who claim to help women but would not provide any practical help to women who courageously choose life for their baby.
Your writer is critical of Dr Joseph Hassan of Nelson who is following his conscience by declining to prescribe the contraceptive pill to his female patients. He does this because he knows that the contraceptive pill causes the death of human embryos and is dangerous to women’s health. The Contraception Sterilisation and Abortion Act 1977, section 46, Conscientious Objection.
The writer depicts a lack of balance in quoting well known pro-abortionist Professor Liz Beddoe of Auckland who is predictably scathing in her attack of PCS & CPS. It is noted that the writer has not quoted from any person who is supportive of PCS & CPS.
Radio NZ would be providing a service to women if they recognised the wonderful help that is provided in New Zealand by the caring compassionate women volunteers of PCS & CPS to women who are facing an unplanned pregnancy. These women are often alone, exploited and coerced with threats of violence and abandonment if they don’t destroy the child in their womb. These organisations need increased funding, not less, if they are to provide the help that women deserve to receive.
Your writer genuinely believes that we help women by helping them to kill their children, we don’t. Women who have an abortion are faced with a lifetime of grief, sorrow and regret. A woman seeking an abortion is making a cry for help. Women do not desire an abortion like a woman seeking an ice cream cone or a Porsche but like an animal that is gnawing its leg off which is caught in a trap.
Radio NZ is doing a great disservice to women in New Zealand by attacking women who belong to PCS & CPS and who volunteer their time, energy and resources to help women in their hour of need. They deserve to be applauded, not attacked.
Right to Life