Making abortion easier to get does not address serious underlying issues


The New Zealand Catholic Bishops have expressed their concern about the proposed new abortion regime for New Zealand.

However, they look forward to contributing to what they hoped would be an honest, respectful dialogue that explored the complexities surrounding abortion.

The Bishops hear about abortion from a wide community of Catholic women and men said Cynthia Piper, speaking on behalf of the Bishops Conference.

“They are also informed by the work of Catholic agencies who support the well-being of women and families,”

Piper said, “We will be looking closely at the proposed new law and studying the other proposed changes concerning doctors’ freedom of conscience, the ready availability and desirability of counselling for women and the suggestion of safe zones around abortion facilities.

The Bishops issued a press release which makes the following points:

Making abortions easier to get does not address serious underlying issues.

There needs to be a stronger focus on strengthening and extending policies and organisations that support women who are pregnant.

It is an acknowledged fact that, too often, a woman chooses abortion because of poverty, social shaming, lack of community support, coercion from a partner or family or isolation.

Insufficient protection for a defenceless human life

  • For society to pretend that there is not another life involved will only deny the woman concerned the chance to deal with her abortion as the significant and heart-wrenching moral issue that it is
  • Abortion is both a justice issue and a health issue

The Bishops:

  • Strongly support statutory recognition in the present law to the rights of the unborn
  • Are concerned that the proposed new law seeks to do away with any ‘tests’ for women up to 20 weeks gestation
  • Are disquieted that there is only a very vague ‘medical test’ for women who are more than 20 weeks pregnant

A disservice to women

  • The issues raised by abortion are many and they include both the immediate and long-term psychological, mental and emotional consequences of abortion
  • These consequences affect both women and men and impact on their other significant relationships


  • Supplied Ko te Huinga Pīhopa o te Hāhi Katorika o Aotearoa/The New Zealand Catholic Bishops Conference (NZCBC)
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News category: New Zealand, Top Story.

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