Local abortion services remain unavailable to people living in much of the sprawling South Auckland area - which has a population of close to 600,000 and encapsulates some of the most deprived suburbs of New Zealand - despite the issue being repeatedly raised for more than 12 years.
21 December 2020
People living within the Counties Manukau District Health Board (DHB) catchment who need an abortion must travel to the affluent central Auckland suburb of Greenlane. Experts say this creates an access barrier for South Auckland women.
Financial barriers created by the lack of a local service can include the cost of travel, childcare and taking time off work. For people living in Counties Manukau, where the population is younger, and more deprived than elsewhere in New Zealand, those costs can be significant. The area is also home to a high number of Pacific peoples, of whom 64 percent are 'highly deprived', according to Health Ministry data. The Counties Manukau DHB describes Pacific peoples' engagement with and access to health services when they need them as being "a challenge".
Wednesday, 16 December 2020
Press Release: ALRANZ Abortion Rights Aotearoa
ALRANZ Abortion Rights Aotearoa notes with disappointment that the Ministry of Health survey shows improvements to abortion care have not reached all DHBs.
While delays for early medical and surgical abortions have shortened in some DHBs, others still do not offer abortion care at all. Different DHBs do not provide medical abortions, or telemedicine, or abortions post 20 weeks gestation.
The Associate Health Minister says she's watching district health boards "very closely" after a survey found variations in abortion services offered across the country.
Dec 15, 2020
By Susan Strongman
It's been more than eight months since abortion law reform came into force, yet the Ministry of Health survey found in some parts of New Zealand early medical abortions - where two pills are taken to induce a miscarriage within the first nine weeks of pregnancy - are not locally available at all.
It also found significant differences in later gestation abortion services offered across DHBs, meaning it's harder form some people to access the procedure because of where they live.
AFP New Zealand, Taylor Thompson Fuller
Published on Monday 30 November 2020
A video posted by a British pro-life group on Facebook that contains multiple misleading claims about New Zealand’s abortion laws has been viewed tens of thousands of times. The video includes a false suggestion that abortion in New Zealand is “available on-demand, for any reason, up to birth”. Similar claims were published in multiple other anti-abortion posts shared in the United States.
The video was published by Right To Life UK here on Facebook on October 14, where it has been viewed more than 120,000 times.
10 July 2020
The New Zealand Health Practitioners
Disciplinary Tribunal said the doctor, whose name is suppressed, illegally
prescribed the medicines to two patients.
The move was against the requirements of the Contraception, Sterilisation and
Abortion Act. The charge was laid against "Dr E" by a Professional
Conduct Committee and the matter was heard on 29 January.
In one patient the doctor ought to have known the prescription exceeded the
recommended dose. He also prescribed it in combination with Primolut - an
inappropriate treatment for termination of pregnancy.
Abortion Statistics: Year Ended December 2019
Tuesday, 16 June 2020
Press Release: Statistics New Zealand
Far fewer women aged under 20 years had abortions in recent years compared with a decade ago, Stats NZ said today.
Abortions for women under 20 have been decreasing since the peak in 2007. In 2019, just under 10 percent of the 12,857 abortions were for women under 20. In 2007, it was 23 percent.
Editorial | Whither abortion reform?
Monday | March 23, 2020
IT IS not clear whether Parliament’s Human Resources and Social Development Committee, which hasn’t had a sitting in recent months, has concluded its hearings on reforming the abortion law and, if it has, what it has recommended to legislators. Its chairman, Ronald Thwaites, will shed light on the matter, as well as informing the public how the committee intends to proceed.
Perchance they are not yet done deliberating, it is this newspaper’s hope that the committee will be inspired by last week’s developments on the matter in New Zealand, which finds its way in their report, and embraced by Jamaica’s legislators.
This week we brought New Zealand's abortion laws into the 21st century
Seeking an abortion was a crime until now, but new legislation has removed the stigma and given women a choice
Thu 19 Mar 2020
New Zealand’s current abortion laws are more than 40 years old and were enacted when there were more MPs in Parliament named Bill than MPs who were female. This week we brought the laws into the 21st century.
Up to now, women seeking an abortion in New Zealand were committing a crime under our main criminal statute but had a defence if they followed the requirements of the abortion legislation. These requirements included the woman being referred by their doctor to two specialists who each had to certify she faces a serious danger to her life or physical or mental health. Other conditions also applied, such as whether the pregnancy was a result of incest or the woman lacked capacity to consent. For abortions after 20 weeks, conditions were more stringent.
Parliament removes abortion from Crimes Act
18 March 2020
Hon Andrew Little
Abortion has been removed from the Crimes Act under a new law passed by Parliament today.
“For over forty years abortion has been the only medical procedure considered a crime in New Zealand. But from now abortions will be rightly treated as a health issue,” Minister of Justice Andrew Little said.
New Zealand passes landmark law to decriminalise abortion
Campaigners hail move that will reclassify abortion as a health issue rather than a crime
Eleanor Ainge Roy
Wed 18 Mar 2020
New Zealand has passed a landmark bill to decriminalise abortion after decades of campaigning.
Andrew Little, the justice minister, said it was long overdue that the procedure would become classified as a health matter and not a criminal one.
The issue was scheduled to be put to a public referendum, but the government scrapped that option late on Wednesday.