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Don Brash backs Judith Collins on parents' rights


Don Brash MP National Party Leader

30 September 2004

Don Brash backs Judith Collins on parents' rights

National Party Leader Don Brash is lending his support to a bid by Judith Collins to ensure that parents are told if their underage daughter seeks an abortion.

"When an abortion is carried out every four days on girls aged between 11 and 14 in this country, it's time to consider whether the current law is working," he says.

"Most of the critics of Judith Collins' proposal conveniently choose to ignore the critical judicial opt-out clause, which is an inherent part of her amendment. This would still give young girls from abusive backgrounds the ability to keep news of the abortion from their parents.

"National's caucus is overwhelmingly in support of this law change, and I will certainly be casting my vote in favour of the proposal. I'm quite sure a number of Labour MPs would also support the new law if they were given the freedom of a conscience vote.

"Labour claims that this is an attack on the integrity of health professionals, but in reality it is a vote of confidence in responsible parents. Several medical professionals have been in contact with me making it clear that on this issue, their industry associations do not speak for them.

"In jurisdictions where parental notification is mandatory, not only have teenage abortions fallen, but so too have teenage pregnancies. That is surely something our society should work towards," says Dr Brash.

ENDS

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