Democrat moves to reduce restrictions
on RU486 condemned
Issued: 1 March 2001
Spokesperson for the Australian Federation of Right to
Life Association, Alison Hope, today condemned moves by Senator Meg Lees, current leader
of the Australian Democrats, to abolish restrictions on abortifacient drugs like RU486
being imported into Australia.
Yesterday evening Senator Lees moved amendments are to
the Therapeutic Goods Act, to ensure that it no longer obliges the Health Minister
to report to the Australian Parliament any decision to allow the importation of
"Given the language used by Senator Lees, people
would be forgiven for thinking that the Therapeutic Goods Act does not allow the
importation of abortifacient drugs. It does no such thing. The only restriction is to
oblige the Health Minister to report to the Australian Parliament any decision to import
an abortifacient drug", said Ms Hope.
"Senator Lees attempts to subvert the
provisions which ensure that the Health Minister is accountable to the Australian
Parliament and through the Parliament to the Australian people is extremely disappointing.
It seems that keeping the bastards honest does not extend to abortifacient
drugs. Instead Senator Lees wants to make sure the bastards arent
accountable to the people for their decisions.
There are a number of important points to remember about
- it is not a way to avoid an abortion, where a woman can
merely take a couple of pills and is no longer pregnant;
- in order to be used with any degree of safety, RU486
requires multiple visits to hospitals or abortion clinics;
- by itself it does not have a very high success rate in
achieving an abortion and must be used in conjunction with a powerful prostaglandin drug
to induce uterine contractions;
- it also may be painful and may involve moderate to severe
cramps and bleeding; and,
- it can further isolate women who are often already
desperate and unsupported, leaving them to undergo the abortion process and possibly face
the sight of their 4-7 week old aborted child alone.
"Our society is capable of providing women who are
pregnant in difficult circumstances with better, more supportive solutions than drugs such
Media contact: Alison Hope, spokesperson for the
Australian Federation of Right to Life Associations, 02 6253 3100