Women’s Equality Party launches abortion decriminalisation campaign
21 November 2016
Sophie Walker, leader of the Women's Equality Party says limiting abortion "is a form of violence against women". Image: Suki Dhanda for the Observer
A new campaign to push for abortion to be removed from the justice statutes and decriminalised is to be launched this month.
The campaign is a flagship policy for the Women's Equality Party, which holds its first conference in Manchester next weekend. Leader Sophie Walker said that abortion should be made a "sexual health and human rights issue" not "left languishing under Victorian criminal law". She went on to say that "if you are denied control over your own body then you are denied so many other controls over your life. Any denial of reproductive rights is a form of violence against women".
Dawn Purvis, former Progressive Unionist Party leader and a member of Marie Stopes International’s advisory board, is to give a keynote speech at the conference.
Fiorella Nash, SPUC researcher and expert on pro-life feminism, said "The Women's Equality Party's abortion fundamentalism is rather at odds with its claim that 'we stand for every woman, and we start by listening'. Perhaps the Women's Equality Party could start by listening to the views of women who see abortion for what it is: a barbaric procedure which exploits women and destroys innocent life. The fight for full equality for women is far from over, but abortion is a symptom of the continuing injustices faced by women not a sign of empowerment."
Exit International plans to fly euthanasia drugs into Melbourne nursing home
Assisted suicide group Exit International said on Sunday that one of its members was considering having a drone deliver euthanasia drugs to their nursing home.
The group's leader Philip Nitschke said that the member was unable to access the deadly drug Nembutal that he had been keeping at home, and so the option of having it delivered by drone to his nursing home had been raised.
Mr Nitschke early this year lost his legal battle to keep his registration to practice medicine in Australia, after a tribunal ruled he posed a serious risk to the public, and could undermine confidence in the medical profession.