This opportunity has been provided by the Australian Christian Lobby:
Australia’s drug regulator has decided to widely increase the availability of the abortion drug RU486 and also relax previous rules for its use.
The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) this week authorised abortion provider Marie Stopes International to use RU486 as an alternative to surgical abortion in its nine centres in Victoria, NSW, WA, the ACT and Queensland. Please click here for more details.
According to a report in Tuesday’s The Australian, Marie Stopes International also convinced the TGA to broaden the rules under which they can use the drug at their clinics, with use of the drug previously restricted to women with existing medical conditions or a risk of serious pregnancy complications.
To do this Marie Stopes had to persuade the TGA that pregnancy was “life-threatening” and they claimed that it is safer for women to terminate a pregnancy than to give birth.
ACL has publicly attacked the TGA’s decision which appears to have been based on ludicrous reasoning.
“Marie Stopes International seems to have resorted to scientifically and morally questionable arguments as a means of overcoming regulatory hurdles to get what they wanted – the ability to offer RU486 to anyone who chooses it provided they are less than nine weeks pregnant,” ACL Managing Director Jim Wallace said in a media release issued on Tuesday.
“Child birth is extremely safe in Australia, with a miniscule mortality rate. To countenance an argument that women have to have access to RU486 to save them from the dangers of childbirth is absurd. At a time when there is wide public concern about Australia’s high abortion rate, is it really acceptable that the administering body should prove itself so gullible and ineffective as a gatekeeper?” Please click here to read the media release.
The TGA has made a decision with wide social, moral and ethical dimensions, without any sort of accountability to the public or democratic processes. This follows on from the Federal Parliament’s strongly contested decision in early 2006 to remove the Health Minister’s power to veto applications to use RU486.
ACL believes that we need to bring back Ministerial responsibility into decisions about the use of abortion agents like RU486, and not allow abortion clinics to dictate the agenda.
If you would like to take further action on this issue and make your concerns known about the decision to widen the use of RU486 please email the Federal Health Minister Nicola Roxon at Nicola.Roxon.MP@aph.gov.au and the TGA at firstname.lastname@example.org.