Abortion to be decriminalised in Queensland
October 17, 2018 4:51 PM   Subscribe

For over 100 years, abortion in Queensland has been a crime, unless a doctor considered it necessary to "prevent serious danger to the woman's physical or mental health". Last night, the Queensland parliament voted in favour of the Termination of Pregnancy Bill. The Bill removes abortion from the criminal code, allows abortion on request up to 22 weeks, and introduces safe access zones of 150 metres around clinics to shield women from harassment.

The Bill was debated for two days, with personal testimony from many politicians. 50 MPs voted for the legislation, and 41 MPs voted against it.

Gina Rushton, a reporter with Buzzfeed, has been writing on this issue for years. She said on Twitter "Two-and-a-half years ago I wrote one story about women being turned away from Queensland's hospitals for seeking abortions. I've since published more than 100 articles on this issue, many with women in really tough circumstances. I'm thinking about all of those women tonight."

Abortion laws in Australia vary from state to state. New South Wales is now the only state in which abortion remains a crime.
posted by fever-trees (9 comments total) 24 users marked this as a favorite
Congratulations Queensland, and I hope NSW soon follows.

Recognition of a a pregnant person’s right to autonomy over their own body is, in my opinion, paramount to gender equity.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 4:59 PM on October 17, 2018 [10 favorites]

I was disappointed that my Labor MP abstained in the final vote, and am grateful to those three LNP politicians who voted in favour of the bill. Gina Rushton tweeted a gender breakdown of the final vote - "80% of female parliamentarians voted to decriminalise and that 93% of men in the LNP voted for abortion to remain a crime."

I also meant to link to this New York Times article which speculated that the number of women in Queensland parliament would contribute to the success of the bill. While 50% of the cabinet are women, the parliament itself is still dominated by men.
posted by fever-trees at 5:12 PM on October 17, 2018 [5 favorites]

It's so rare that anything good happens anymore. Or so it seems. I'm very happy for the people of Queensland.
posted by great_radio at 5:33 PM on October 17, 2018 [7 favorites]

Yay!! Congrats!!
posted by greermahoney at 5:53 PM on October 17, 2018

posted by brundlefly at 6:32 PM on October 17, 2018

Fantastic! I hope this lights a fire again in NSW to achieve the same.
posted by chiquitita at 8:19 PM on October 17, 2018 [4 favorites]

posted by rtha at 8:28 PM on October 17, 2018 [3 favorites]

The Guardian also had a good round-up of the laws in different states.
posted by nnethercote at 9:24 PM on October 17, 2018 [1 favorite]

Good on ya, Queensland. Amazed that NSW is the most retrograde state on this.
posted by rednikki at 11:47 PM on October 19, 2018

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