The South Australian Termination of Pregnancy Bill By Mrs Vera West
Here is a Bill before the South Australian Parliament, which will move Australia into the abortion territory seen in the US, where there can be very late term abortions:
“Abortion will no longer be illegal under proposed state laws being described as a “golden opportunity” for the most significant reform in women’s health in 85 years.
Under current legislation, abortion performed in SA under certain conditions – such as without the approval of two doctors or outside a prescribed hospital – is an offence.
Attorney-General Vickie Chapman said the Termination of Pregnancy Bill, introduced to state parliament on Wednesday, would remove outdated provisions under the 1935 Criminal Law Consolidation Act, and bring SA in line with the rest of the nation.
“This will allow for lawful terminations and ensure women are protected and not faced with alternate circumstances such as having a child that is unwanted and having to give that child away,” Ms Chapman said.
Under the bill, the approval of two medical practitioners will be required only for an abortion after 22 weeks and six days gestation. Barriers to abortion services for women in regional SA will also be removed.
The current requirement of a minimum two-month’s SA residency in order to terminate a pregnancy will be removed.
And the only continuing criminal offence will relate to a seven-year imprisonment penalty to anyone who is not qualified to perform or assist an abortion.
Australian Christian Lobby state director Christopher Brohier said the bill was “radical” and “unacceptable” law reform and that the group would encourage MPs “to exercise their conscience to oppose it”.
Greens MLC Tammy Franks, who initiated abortion law reform in December 2018, welcomed the Bill, saying: “Most people are shocked when they learn that…abortion is still in the criminal code.…It’s now our job as MPs to fix the current laws for the better.”
More than three out of four of South Australians support decriminalisation of abortion, says a survey conducted by Flinders University researchers last year.
President of the Law Society of SA Tim White said: “While it would be very unlikely for a woman to be prosecuted in relation to terminating a pregnancy, the mere fact of it being in criminal legislation represents an outdated view and creates an unnecessary burden and stigma for women who are in an extremely vulnerable and heart-wrenching situation.”
“6—Terminations by medical practitioner from 22 weeks and 6 days (1) A medical practitioner may perform a termination on a person who is more than 22 weeks and 6 days pregnant if— (a) the medical practitioner considers that, in all the circumstances, the 25 termination is medically appropriate; and (b) a second medical practitioner is consulted and that practitioner considers that, in all the circumstances, the termination is medically appropriate. (2) In considering whether a termination is medically appropriate, a medical practitioner must consider— 30 (a) all relevant medical circumstances; and (b) the professional standards and guidelines that apply to the medical practitioner in relation to the performance of the termination. (3) Without limiting section 13 of the Consent to Medical Treatment and Palliative Care Act 1995, a medical practitioner may, in an emergency, perform a termination on a 35 person who is more than 22 weeks and 6 days pregnant, without acting under subsection (1), if the medical practitioner considers necessary to perform the termination to— (a) save the person's life, or (b) save another foetus.”
Some South Australian Christian friends contacted me, being outraged against this, and rightfully so. But there are similar types of Bills in other states, so I suppose the next big cultural push is on. As always, no concerns for the rights of the foetus, an inconvenient being with less rights and value than sacred entities such as protected animals, even insects. This culture will be judged harshly at Judgment Day.