New Zealand bill seeks to allow abortions before 20 weeks

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The government of New Zealand proposed a bill this week that would lift a law stipulating that abortions before 20 weeks may only be performed for medical reasons.

It will be introduced to the New Zealand Parliament on August 8 for a preliminary vote.

Currently, a woman seeking an abortion must have two doctors’ referrals stating that the pregnancy poses a danger to her physical or mental health.

If the bill passed, women would be able to undergo abortions up to 20 weeks into pregnancy without a doctor’s referral or medical reason. After 20 weeks, they would need a doctor to assess that the pregnancy poses a threat to their physical or mental health.

The legislation would also prohibit pro-life counselors and protestors from coming within 500 feet of an abortion clinic.



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