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Labor Closure Of Regional Birth Units While Pushing For Abortion A Disgrace

Cherish Life Queensland has slammed the State Labor Government’s closure of 40 maternity units during its various terms over the past two decades, which has led to a spike in infant mortality and dangerous birthing conditions for many Queensland mothers in rural and regional areas.

“The Labor Government’s disregard for the health of expectant women and babies in rural and regional areas over many years is very worrying, especially when contrasted to the way it is now pushing for extreme abortion laws under which public hospitals would have to provide free abortion on request,” Ms Teeshan Johnson, Cherish Life executive director said.

“It seems successive Labor Governments have made critical health decisions based on money, at the expense of babies’ lives and women’s health.

“Now Deputy Premier Jackie Trad is spruiking extreme and unpopular abortion-to-birth legislation, which if passed will further reduce the supply of doctors to rural and regional areas because of the lack of proper conscientious objection protection for doctors.

“Ironically, one of the reasons abortion advocates are giving for this extreme legislation is that women in rural and regional areas will have better access to abortion.

“So there could well be a situation where a regional hospital which has had its birthing unit closed will start to offer abortion services instead under the proposed Labor law.

“It is an absolute disgrace that the Labor Government has caused though its closure of much-needed birthing units a situation in which babies born in country towns without a maternity unit have almost four times the chance of dying as babies who are born in rural hospitals with maternity services.

“And it would be a huge insult to these regional towns to offer abortion services in the place of birthing units in the local hospitals.” 

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Legalisation Would Increase Abortions in Public Hospitals

The claim by Health Minister Stephen Miles at parliamentary estimates hearings yesterday that legalising abortion was unlikely to increase the number of terminations in Queensland’s public hospitals is misleading, according to Cherish Life Queensland.

This is because the assurance by Dr Miles was limited to ‘in the short term’,” Ms Teeshan Johnson, Cherish Life executive director said.

The truth is that decriminalisation would corrupt the culture of the Queensland public hospital system over time.

At the Queensland Parliament Health Committee hearings into the first Pyne abortion Bill in 2016, former director of maternal and foetal medicine at the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital, Dr Carol Portmann, who indicated she performs abortions up to 20 weeks as part of her private gynaecology practice, gave evidence that in the event of decriminalisation, the proportion of terminations done in public hospitals would be likely to increase within a decade from the current 2% to ‘20 to 25%’.

Dr Portmann also said that decriminalisation would change the ‘health culture’ within public hospitals to a culture in which abortion was just ‘part of routine medical care’.

Ms Johnson also said that the lack of a true conscientious objection clause for medical professionals in the Labor Government’s Bill, if enacted, no doubt would cause some medical professionals to exit the profession, as well as deter new entrants.

Because the new law would compel doctors to be complicit by referring for abortion, even if they considered it not to be in the best interests of their patients, we could face a health crisis with an undersupply of doctors,” she said.

In decriminalising abortion at all costs, the Queensland Labor Government could irreparably damage our public hospitals and regional health services.

It is obvious that the number of terminations in public hospitals would increase significantly over time, as one of the reasons advocates give for decriminalisation is to reduce the out-of-pocket costs to women and to make abortion ‘free’.

If abortion on demand is legalised, taxpayer-funded public hospitals will have to offer this elective ‘health care’ procedure free, for social reasons such as economic disadvantage, relationship break-up or even sex selection.

Inevitably, the overall number of abortions would increase as a result of this free service, and due to the fact that whenever something is legalised, the incidence of it always rises, as the law plays a role in educating the community regarding moral values.”

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Bill Contradicts Trad's Late-term Abortion Claim

Deputy Premier Jackie Trad’s assertion at a pro-abortion rally on the weekend [Eds: Saturday, 21 July] that she is not campaigning for the right to abortion as late as 38 weeks contradicts the State Government’s bill, which allows for exactly that with a totally ineffective restriction against late-term abortion, according to Cherish Life Queensland. 

“The truth is that this extreme bill would allow abortion on demand, no questions asked, to 22 weeks gestation - then from 22 weeks to birth a broad range of criteria would permit the destruction of viable babies of healthy mothers for ‘social’ reasons, including economic disadvantage and even sex selection,” Cherish Life executive director Teeshan Johnson said.

“If the Queensland Labor Government’s bill is passed, the number of late-term abortions definitely will rise, because of loose rules, expanded criteria and removal of any potential legal penalties on doctors.

“In recent years, almost half of the late-term abortions in Victoria, which has a similar so-called ‘limit’, have been performed on ‘psycho-social’ grounds.

Recent research by YouGovGalaxy showed that only 5% of Queensland voters support abortion after 23 weeks, with 73% opposed.

“Ms Trad is among the 5% of Queenslanders who agree with late-term abortion and she is trying to impose that extreme view on all Queenslanders through this barbaric legislation.”

At the rally, Ms Trad also was reported as saying that the Government’s abortion bill would “fix the last area of absolute discrimination against women”.

“As the Labor Government’s bill allows abortion for any reason, even sex selection of unborn female babies who are killed for the ‘crime’ of being a girl, this claim of stopping ‘discrimination against women’ is absurd,” Ms Johnson said.

“This bill is unnecessary, as under the current law, abortion is readily accessible in private clinics up to 20 weeks, and in public hospitals for foetal abnormalities or in rare cases where there is a serious danger to the mother’s health.

“With 14,000 terminations already in Queensland each year, the question must be asked: How many abortions are enough?”

ENDS

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Extreme Labor Bill Will Legalise Late-Term and Sex Selection Abortion

The Labor Government’s decriminalisation bill announced today effectively will allow abortion at any stage of pregnancy and for any reason, according to Cherish Life Queensland. 

“This extreme legislation will allow abortion after 22 weeks of pregnancy – the earliest age of viability – with the approval of two doctors who can base their decision on a woman’s ‘social circumstances’,” executive director Ms Teeshan Johnson said.

“In recent years, almost half of the late-term abortions in Victoria, which has a similar so-called ‘limit’, have been performed on ‘psycho-social’ grounds.

“This radical bill is a con job to try to trick the Queensland public into thinking there will be an effective restriction on late-term abortions, when in fact it will legalise the killing of healthy viable unborn babies for social or financial reasons.

“Recent research by YouGovGalaxy showed that only 5% of Queensland voters support abortion after 23 weeks, with 73% opposed.

“Also, the price of endorsing decriminalisation is that abortion will be legal for sex selection.

“The inconvenient truth is that abortion for any reason means legalising the killing of unborn baby girls, just because they are female.

“Only 6% of Queenslanders support sex-selection abortions, with 85% opposed.

“There is evidence that gender selection abortions do occur in Australia, provided by a demographic study using ABS data from 2003 to 2013 showing ‘1,395 missing girls’, which was reported by SBS and Daily Mail Australia in 2015.

“And in 2013 Dr Mark Hobart of Melbourne faced disciplinary charges for refusing to refer a couple for a sex selection abortion in Victoria.

“Inevitably, the overall number of abortions in Queensland will increase after decriminalisation, as it will become freely available in public hospitals, which is not currently the case.

“The more abortions that occur, the more women will be harmed psychologically and physically.

“This bill is unnecessary, as under the current law, abortion is readily accessible in private clinics and there are about 14,000 terminations in Queensland each year. How many abortions are enough?”

ENDS

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Euthanasia Campaign Based On Deception And Fear

Cherish Life Queensland has condemned the Dying with Dignity launch at Queensland Parliament today as completely undignified.

“There is nothing dignified about killing a vulnerable human being, who is in need of good medical care, support and protection,” Cherish Life Queensland president Julie Borger said.

“This push to create a culture of death is utterly counter-productive to combating Australia’s suicide epidemic.

“The campaign to legalise euthanasia in Queensland is based on deception and fear.

“Euthanasia advocates give the false impression that terminally ill patients have to suffer excruciating pain and dreadful agony.

“This is simply not the case with the advanced health care available today in Australia.

“It is entirely ethical, completely legal and best medical practice for a doctor to do whatever it takes to relieve a patient’s pain, even if it has the unintended but possible effect of hastening death.

“In the very rare cases when physical pain cannot be managed adequately, palliative care specialists can use a form of light sedation to keep the dying patient comfortable, whether to allow a brief ‘time out’ at peaks of pain, or to manage terminal symptoms.  

“If euthanasia was legalised, any terminally ill patients, who need love and care, would feel pressure - whether real or imagined - to do ‘the right thing’ and request euthanasia so they are not ‘a burden on their family’.  

“No safeguards are effective when it comes to euthanasia. It is open to serious manipulation and can be the worst and ultimate form of abuse of those who are ill, elderly, or disabled.

“This is one of the many reasons why the Australian Medical Association is opposed to the legalisation of euthanasia and instead supports palliative care, which is the true form of assisted dying.

“Palliative care focuses on relieving pain and keeping patients comfortable in order to allow a natural and dignified death at their appointed time.  

“Good medical practice is all about facilitating natural death with dignity and peace.

“As part of this care, patients have autonomy and choice, as they have the right to refuse medical treatment that they consider to be futile or burdensome, or delaying the dying process.

“Doctors should kill the pain, not the patient.

“There is no need for euthanasia to be legalised.

“If there is to be a parliamentary inquiry into end-of-life issues, it must encompass the need for adequate resourcing of palliative care and public education on the dying process.”

ENDS

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NSW ‘safe Zones’ Abortion Bill Slammed As Extreme Censorship And Anti-choice

Pro-choice NSW Minister for Family and Community Services and former Sex Discrimination Commissioner Ms Pru Goward voted against the passing of the Sharpe abortion bill on “safe zones” in NSW Parliament last night, describing it “a very powerful weapon of censorship”.

Ms Teeshan Johnson, campaign director of Cherish Life Queensland, commended Ms Goward’s assessment, saying “this extreme legislation is aimed at shutting down freedom of speech and protecting abortion businesses rather than protecting women”.

“The ‘pro-choice’ militants once again have diminished freedom of speech and civil rights in Australia, under a false catch-cry of ‘safety’.

“It’s an absolute lie that exclusion zones promote women’s safety.

“There’s nothing safe about abortion for women – it’s one of the riskiest medical procedures around.

“Up to 1 in 5 women who have an abortion develop a serious, prolonged mental illness because of an abortion, and there is an increased risk of breast cancer and increased infertility risks associated with abortion.

“And the mortal harm to the unborn cannot be forgotten in this debate.

“Sidewalk counsellors outside abortion clinics often do a tremendous amount of good, and there are many documented cases of help and support given to women at a most vulnerable time.

“The pro-abortion militants preach choice, but in reality they are ruthlessly promoting abortion as the only choice - at the cost of freedom of speech, real choice and lives,” Ms Johnson said.

ENDS

Media enquiries: CLQ Campaign Director - Teeshan Johnson on +61 447 027 000.

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‘It's Too Late, It Has a Heartbeat’ – We Couldn't Agree More

The brave decision by former Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce and his partner Vikki Campion to choose life for their unborn child in the face of extreme pressure to abort the pregnancy has been commended by Cherish Life Queensland.

Ms Campion’s resolve not to abort, because, as she stated: “It’s too late, it has a heartbeat”, showed respect for the life of the unborn which is all too absent in popular culture, Cherish Life Queensland president Julie Borger said.

“Just three weeks after conception, at the time most women discover they are pregnant, the unborn child’s heartbeat can be detected.

“From the moment of conception, this little human person is unique – with gender, eye colour, height and talents all predetermined. 

“The couple should be congratulated for having the integrity and the courage to give life to their baby son even though they knew it would create a media frenzy which would cost Mr Joyce his job.

“While Ms Campion was fortunate to have the strong support of Mr Joyce throughout her pregnancy, it’s disgraceful she had to endure pressure to abort from certain unnamed politicians.

“Unfortunately, abortion coercion all too common. A YouGovGalaxy opinion poll of 1,001 Queensland voters in February this year revealed that 26% of Queenslanders personally know someone who was pressured to have an abortion.

“Studies show that women who are coerced into an abortion have a worse mental health prognosis than a woman who has freely chosen to have an abortion.

“If there is ‘a woman’s right to choose’, surely it must extend to protecting her choice to continue a pregnancy and give birth to her baby.

“We are pleased that Mr Joyce and Ms Campion did not opt for the ‘quick-fix’ of abortion, because in reality abortion is never a quick-fix.

“The fact is that up to 1 in 5 women who abort develop a serious prolonged mental health illness because of the abortion, while there are also risks to future pregnancies and a heightened risk of breast cancer.

“There are no winners in abortion, except perhaps the abortion providers, as for them abortion is big business,” Mrs Borger said. ENDS - For more information, please contact Julie Borger on 0412 692 343

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For media enquiries, please call Julie Borger on 0412 692 34

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Euthanasia hurts suicide prevention, Cherish Life warns

The suicide of 104-year-old Australian scientist David Goodall, who took his life in Switzerland tonight, will have the effect of encouraging vulnerable people to follow his example, Cherish Life Queensland has warned.

“This sends entirely the wrong message to those who are battling feelings of worthlessness and suicide ideation and undermines society’s attempts to reduce the suicide rate,” Cherish Life Queensland president Julie Borger said.

“It is sad that this elderly gentleman felt that his failing eyesight and impaired mobility made life no longer worth living.

“One of the many real problems with euthanasia or assisted killing is that it always burdens someone else with the responsibility for the death.

“A natural process assisted by palliative care to ease any pain or suffering is the only way to death with true peace and dignity.

“It was unfortunate that Exit International, which was founded by deregistered Australian doctor Philip Nitschke, who has been dubbed ‘Dr Death’, encouraged Goodall to kill himself.

“This dangerous organisation has been involved in numerous suicides in Australia and overseas over the last two decades.

“Goodall’s death is one of many which Dr Death’s organisation has facilitated, where the patient was not terminally ill, but was simply tired of life.

“This is evidence of the slippery slope, which euthanasia advocates deny exists.

“The justification for euthanasia - which the public has been assured is only for competent adults who are terminally ill and in severe pain - has been expanded to cover anyone who wishes to be included, and even those who cannot give informed consent, in practically every jurisdiction which has gone down this path.”

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Push to Deny Labor MPs Conscience Vote on Abortion Slammed

A push within the Australian Labor Party to deprive its members in the Queensland Parliament of their right to vote according to their conscience on the decriminalisation of abortion has been slammed by Cherish Life Queensland.

A pro-abortion group within the ALP, Labor for Choice, is pushing for this change to the party platform at the next national conference in July.

“Freedom of conscience is a fundamental human right under international law,” Cherish Life Queensland president Julie Borger said.

“The right to a conscience vote on abortion has been included in the federal platform of the Labor Party since 1984, properly recognising that abortion is a life or death issue and not merely a legal or medical one.

“If the ALP national conference votes to bind its MPs to vote for the decriminalisation of abortion, they would be imposing their morality on some of their colleagues and ironically denying them their ‘choice’ by compelling them to vote against their personal convictions.

“This also would force MPs to vote against their constituents’ views.

“A YouGovGalaxy opinion poll earlier this year showed that 55% of Queensland voters either want the current abortion law to stay the same or be made stricter.

“The poll showed that decriminalisation is not a vote-winner, with 32% of Queenslanders less likely to vote for a pro-abortion MP, compared to 18% who would be more likely to do so.”

Mrs Borger urged those who support human rights to encourage their Labor members of State Parliament to continue to support conscientious objection for votes on “life” issues.

She said the claim by Labor for Choice that abortion was “difficult to access” was a lie.

“It is widely accepted that up to 14,000 abortions occur in Queensland each year under the current law.

“Decriminalisation inevitably would mean even more abortions, which would mean more women being harmed and more lives being destroyed.”

Mrs Borger said Labor for Choice only pretended to be “pro-women” and “pro-choice”, as the group was opposed to independent counselling and informed consent protections for women.

“These extremists who oppose informed consent laws want to impose just one choice on women.

“Women deserve better than abortion.”

ENDS

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