NEW ZEALAND – Labour starts process of reforming the abortion law, as new Prime Minister had promised – Safe Abortion

On 16 February 2018, Andrew Little, senior Labour Party MP, made public the governing party’s decision to launch reform of New Zealand’s abortion law and invited the two other governing parties, New Zealand First and the Greens, to comment. He said he had received a letter from Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern after the tripartite coalition was formed, directing him to begin the process. Once the two other parties give feedback, the Law Commission will be asked to make a recommendation.

Terry Bellamak, President of the Abortion Law Reform Association, would like to see abortion removed from the Crimes Act altogether and the restrictive grounds for abortion abolished. Currently, abortion is permitted only if the pregnancy is a risk to the physical or mental health of the woman, if there is a substantial risk of serious handicap, if the pregnancy is a result of incest or the woman is deemed to be “severely subnormal”.

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