ALP addresses pro-choice forum

May 6, 1998

ALP addresses pro-choice forum

By Amanda Lawrence

CANBERRA — On April 29, 50 people attended a public meeting on abortion held by ACT Pro Choice. The meeting discussed abortion law reform, access to abortion and women's right to choose how to control their reproduction.

Speakers included Wayne Berry, former leader of the Labor opposition in the ACT Legislative Assembly and opposition spokesperson for industrial relations.

Berry was invited after he stated his support for accessible abortion after the recent ACT election. He reaffirmed this commitment, but said he was not prepared to put a repeal bill to the assembly at present because its passage was not guaranteed. This would "send the wrong message to the community", he said, adding that he would put a repeal bill "when the time was right".

Angela Luvera, a pro-choice activist from WA, spoke about the campaign to decriminalise abortion in that state. Val Edwards, a long-time feminist activist from the Democratic Socialist Party also spoke. She urged trade unions to identify abortion as a health issue and join the campaign for repeal. Discussion focused around the need to build a strong and broad campaign for free, safe and legal abortion on demand.

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