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A response to Tasmania's Reproductive Health (Access to Terminations) bill


Dear Hon. Michelle O'Byrne and the Department of Health and Human Services,

Please reconsider your support for the Reproductive Health (Access to Terminations) bill. As you are aware, current Tasmanian laws already allow for the termination of pregnancy where it two doctors consider that it would be more difficult for a woman to continue with the pregnancy than to terminate it. Making abortion in the first 24 weeks accessible without any health reason would not promote the health of women or their unborn children.
Please consider the following points:
* This bill fails to promote true choice for women. Those who will not be involved in referring for abortion are penalised, but there are no similar penalties for counselors who fail to fully inform women of their options other than abortion. To truly be about choice, this bill would need to also stipulate penalties for such counselors or clinic workers as well as for any family member or partner involved in pressuring a woman to have an abortion.
* This bill fails to ensure women have true freedom of choice through failing to stipulate the information they must be offered for informed consent to be in effect. For example, will they be informed of the development of their unborn child and all their other options? This bill reduces current protections for women through removing the requirement that they be counseled about their options.
* Later abortions carry with them a greater risk of abortion related grief and trauma, and therefore it is not in the interests of women to treat them like any other medical procedure. Experience in Victoria shows that later abortions increase when physical health requirements for them are removed.
* The facts about the development of the unborn child leave us in no doubt that a death occurs in every abortion, leaving the remaining family members bereaved. Therefore, the law should provide some protection for these vulnerable members of the human family.
* This bill hinders the freedom of choice of health professionals and counselors to refuse to have any involvement in providing abortion access where it is not necessary to save the life of the woman.
* This bill hinders freedom of speech through hindering peaceful protests such as those I have been involved in with my children outside the Victoria St clinic in 2011. I went to these events out of sincere love for those involved in a practice I consider to be damaging. I should have the freedom to continue to do so.

Kind regards,
Sherrin Drew

Ruth Bosveld –   – (March 20, 2013 at 10:39 PM)  

Well done, Sherrin. We can only try.

Faith  – (March 21, 2013 at 6:59 AM)  

wow! well said. Here in America this is also a very sad, ongoing problem. :( I'm assuming you are going to mail this to your political people you addressed it to? Will pray for this, Sherrin!!

Kerrin Rutherford  – (March 31, 2013 at 10:53 AM)  

I agree Wherein, were can we put our thoughts in writing and who do we send comments to in relation to this Bill? Is human life not important any more?

Sherrin  – (March 31, 2013 at 7:04 PM)  

Thanks for your comments!
You can send submissions to public.health@dhhs.tas.gov.au
Please do!

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