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.”