Some things to remember when discussing decriminalising abortion

Today the Green Party announced their policy to decriminalise abortion. So, naturally, everyone is now talking about abortion.

I am truly shocked at how many Abortion and Contraception Experts have suddenly come out of the woodwork. It’s a mystery we have such poor youth sexual health outcomes in this country considering how many professionals are here to help.

I’m not a clinical professional (unlike all of you), but I do have many years of experience in community sex education and research. And given we’re all sharing opinions today, I figured some more couldn’t hurt.

So, here are a few things to keep in mind when wading in to a discussion your thoughts are clearly vital to:

  • Not all women can get pregnant.
  • Not all men cannot.
  • Not all mothers are birth mums.
  • You don’t need to caveat your opinion on abortion with “I personally wouldn’t BUT” because it’s not a moral competition.
  • The decision to view a pregnancy as involving a baby is up to the pregnant person and no one else.
  • Abortion affects everyone differently.
  • Statistically, one of the largest groups of people seeking abortion already have children.
  • Contraception is not as accessible as you think.
  • Contraception is flawed and without much variety. There is no contraception option that does not include side effects or risk of failure.
  • Hormonal contraception (the long-term most often prescribed) can profoundly affect health.
  • The decision to decriminalise abortion in the Green proposal is literally JUST about removing the need for people to fake health issues.
  • If you think the status quo should remain, you support a law which in practice requires health professionals to coach patients to lie.
  • If you think it should not be an option to a) have a legal loophole abortion, or b) have a truly legal abortion, please tell me how you plan to manage an increase in Police, Justice and Corrections work to find and prosecute people who terminate pregnancies & how that would look.
  • Making abortion illegal (or more illegal) does not stop abortions. It stops safe abortions.

 

 

 

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