The Queensland community is overwhelming against removing abortion safeguards according to evidence presented today to a Queensland Parliamentary inquiry into an abortion bill introduced by Cairns MP Rob Pyne.
Australian Christian Lobby Queensland Director, Wendy Francis, told the parliamentary committee that there was overwhelming opposition to changing abortion laws with more than 80 per cent of current submissions on the Committee’s website opposed to the bill.
The committee received more than 1,300 submissions on Mr Pyne’s second abortion bill after his first bill tabled earlier this year generated 1,400 submissions that also were overwhelmingly against any changes to current laws.
In addition, the first abortion bill attracted 23,800 signatures in a petition against the bill, while a petition against his second bill has so far attracted more than 12,100 signatures opposed.
“It is clear from the response to both bills that Queenslanders take abortion very seriously and are wary of any moves to liberalise current laws,” Ms Francis said.
“I believe this is in stark contrast to the approach Mr Pyne adopted when he tabled his second abortion bill without even awaiting the Parliamentary report into his first bill.
“Mr Pyne’s ill-conceived second bill has done nothing to allay the concerns of Queenslanders.
“The bill specifies that women can conduct their own abortions on themselves.
“Whether this is a reference to chemical abortions with RU486 or something else, it is incredibly irresponsible and anti-women, and indeed dangerous, and contrary to medical advice,” she said.
“Requiring two doctors, who could be abortionists at a for-profit clinic, to sign off on abortion-to-birth was just window dressing, evidenced by the fact that only one doctor actually has to see the patient.
“The anti-free speech clause, prohibiting free speech, peaceful prayer and the freedom to protest outside money-making clinics, is draconian, and there is considerable doubt that it would even pass the constitutional test.
“Women who find themselves with an unwanted pregnancy deserve so much more than what Mr Pyne would want us to believe is an easy fix. It’s not.
“Women deserve to be given all information, about all options, as well as appropriate support.
“Despite extensive input from professionals, Mr Pyne, in his new bill, has ignored calls for counselling, cooling off periods, access to ultrasound technology to view the unborn baby and respect for the rights of doctors and nurses to be free to counsel patients with all options that are available to them.”