Abortion has finally been decriminalised in New South Wales, after decades of campaigning and nearly 40 hours of parliamentary “debate” that generated widespread anguish around what should be a basic health matter.
Following the victory in the campaign to repeal Ireland’s anti abortion laws, Ireland has entered a new historic moment ripe with possibilities for profound change, writes Amy Ward.
Another stolen generation appears certain to be created in NSW, after the Coalition government passed a new adoption law making it easier for a child to be adopted by a foster family without parental consent.
The Argentine Senate’s rejection of a bill to legalise abortion did not stop a Latin American-wide movement, writes Fabiana Frayssinet. The movement is on the streets and expanding in an increasingly coordinated manner among women’s organisations in the region with the most restrictive laws and policies against pregnant women’s right to choose.
NSW has just passed a law enforcing safe zones outside abortion clinics. It has been well received by supporters of reproductive rights and clinic workers. But some argue such laws — which now cover most states and territories — are a serious infingement of free speech.
Melbourne’s Royal Women’s Hospital (RWH) has decided to halve its funding for the Pregnancy Advisory Service (PAS), a vital Melbourne service.
This decision is particularly baffling in the light of the health minister’s commitment to fund a state-wide service which, by all accounts, would have gone to the RWH. Tragically, the RWH has backed away and instead decided to reduce the service.
The funding was picked up by Women’s Health Victoria to develop 1800 My Options, an online, state-wide phone service providing information on sexual and reproductive health service.
Tasmanian elections are decided by the Hare-Clark system, a method of proportional voting that means a party must secure close to half the total vote to win majority government.
It is a complex system in which a voter has a single transferable vote in one of the five electorates, each of which elect five members of parliament. The system often produces close results and minority governments. It also means seats are rarely decided on election night.
The Socialist Alliance is running in the November 25 Queensland state elections to help build an anti-capitalist alternative to the two-party system. We are also supporting the re-election of progressive independent MP Rob Pyne in Cairns and calling for a vote for the Greens in other seats.
One of the most important aspects of Venezuela’s pro-poor Bolivarian Revolution has been its promotion of women's empowerment through community organisation.
To get a sense of how this grassroots process of community organising is developing and the role women are playing in the process, we visited the Ataroa and Lomas de Leon communes as part of the Venezuela Analysis international solidarity delegation in late August.
After a long battle, women will have the right to abortion for therapeutic reasons. Chile’s Constitutional Court announced a bill allowing abortion in such circumstances had been approved on August 21, despite pressure from conservative right-wing forces.
Women have again been let down by the majority of MPs in the NSW Legislative Council who voted down a Greens’ bill to decriminalise abortion on May 11.
The vote was 25 against and 14 in favour of Dr Mehreen Faruqi’s private members’ bill and it was greeted with cries of "shame" from the packed public gallery.
The decades’ long campaign to take abortion out of the NSW Crimes Act is coming to a head. A Greens bill to do this and enact safe zones around abortion clinics will go to the NSW Parliament on May 11.
Supporters of abortion rights gathered outside St Mary’s Cathedral on March 26 to declare their support for choice.
The action was organised to counter the annual anti-choice “Day of the Unborn Child” event, described as “a peaceful march to protect preborn babies”. In reality, it is designed to perpetrate myths and shame anyone thinking of, or who has had, an abortion.
Nineteen doctors who are current or recent providers of abortion services in Queensland have signed a letter to the state premier calling for abortion decriminalisation to be resolved in the current term of parliament. This follows another delay in achieving legal reform after private member's bills were withdrawn earlier this year.
The signatories include an overwhelming majority of doctors performing abortion in Queensland.
Decriminalisation of abortion will be referred to the Queensland Law Reform Commission (QLRC) by the Palaszczuk Labor government after independent MP Rob Pyne withdrew his private member's bills on the issue.
The bills were due to be debated on March 1 but Pyne withdrew them the day before — to the disappointment of many pro-choice activists — when it became clear they faced defeat in the parliament.
More than 400 people rallied for abortion rights outside the Queensland parliament on February 16 in the lead up to a March 1 debate on decriminalising abortion in the state.
One feature of the rally was the strong support by unionists speaking out in favour of the campaign demands. General secretary of the Queensland Council of Unions Ros McLennan gave a powerful speech criticising the “weak-kneed hand-wringing and flip flopping” of the state's politicians when the “right thing to do is just so clear”.