NZ’s Views On Abortion Laws Already Known

Media Release 28 May 2018
Family First NZ says that the views of NZers on our abortion laws have already been expressed, and that there is a clear rejection of the type of extremist abortion law being pushed by groups like ALRANZ.

“New Zealanders don’t want an extreme abortion law – they want a law that works best for women’s health and well-being, and which considers all human beings involved in a pregnancy. Polling of New Zealanders released at the beginning of the year found significant support for greater time limits on abortion, including from those who generally support abortion. There was surprisingly small support for the current Crimes Act time limit of 20 weeks, and overwhelming rejection of any extension to the limit. There was also strong support for legal safeguards,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director for Family First NZ.

“The vast majority of the population – including people who generally support abortion – show strong support and acceptance of the current legal framework and the presence of safeguards around issues such as coercion, standards for providers, and informed consent.”

“Abortion is both a health issue and a legal issue. The health of the mother, and the health of the unborn child – the legal safety of the mother, and the legal status of the unborn child. To remove legislation about abortion from the criminal code and insert it solely in the health code is to equate a procedure to remove an unborn baby with a procedure to remove an appendix. This denies the humanity of the baby and creates inconsistency with other legislation which clearly recognises the rights of the unborn child.”

“Extremist pro-abortion group ALRANZ admit they don’t want any laws or regulations around abortion to safeguard women. This is actually quite shocking, but fortunately rejected by most NZers. The polling showed that only 4% support the law as proposed by ALRANZ. 53% of those who generally support abortion think the time limit should be less than the current 20 weeks – 29% of abortion supporters say 10 weeks or less. Of those who did pick a time limit, 15 weeks was the median choice, according to Curia Market Research.”

Other safeguards in the current law are supported by the public. 86% support the current legal requirements of providers and premises having to be licensed. 90% oppose sex selective abortions. 76% support doctors being required to verify a woman seeking an abortion is not under any coercion from a 3rd party. And a 2011 poll found that the majority of New Zealanders (64%) believe that women considering an abortion have the right to be fully informed of the medical risks of abortion – and the alternatives.

A 2016 survey asked respondents whether they agreed with the following statement: “Women who have abortions risk harming their mental health as a result of the abortion.” Overall, 46% agreed with the statement, 21% were unsure or didn’t say, and only 33% disagreed. Significantly, strongest agreement with the statement came from the younger 18-40 age bracket (50%).


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