New South Wales is one of the last states to decriminalise abortion. We have seen the positive effects of decriminalising abortion in Queensland last year, with increased access to services in hospitals and more doctors willing to provide vital services without fear of prosecution.
Marie Stopes strongly supports the bill to remove abortion from the Crimes Act in New South Wales (NSW).
“We are fully supportive of this bill and are looking forward to working with the Health Department and hospital services to bring reproductive choice and access to women in NSW” Managing Director, Jamal Hakim said.
The bill, introduced by Independent MP Alex Greenwhich, will:
- remove abortion from the Crimes Act
- define abortion as a medical procedure in its own legislation
- allow abortion up to 22 weeks’ gestation, and
- after 22 weeks, with the consent of two doctors.
Importantly, the bill will also mandate that any doctors who conscientiously object to abortion must refer their patient to other medical practitioners who will provide the service. This is particularly important for rural women, who may have limited options.
“It’s time that NSW modernises its 119 year old abortion laws and allows women to have agency over their body.” Mr Hakim said.
Despite a delay in the bill’s introduction, we are hopeful that women in NSW will soon have access to this normal medical procedure.