Politicians debate whether to make abortion laws trans-inclusive

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New Zealand politicians have been heatedly debating whether to change “pregnant women” to “pregnant people” as the country reviews its abortion laws. A parliamentary select committee has been hearing submissions on legislation that would allow for abortions up to 20 weeks of pregnancy without requiring a doctor’s note, remove abortion from the crime act and to make the zones around the abortion clinics safe and free from protesters. The Abortion Legislation Bill currently using the traditional terminology, stating that abortions can be performed only by pregnant women. But the select committee has heard from some people who think the language should be updated to include pregnant transgender men and the segment of the non-binary people that is able to get pregnant and to give birth. Thought there’s not currently data available for New Zealand, there are at least 22 such cases registered in the neighboring Australia. Changes to the bill are now being considered before it goes back to the New Zealand parliament for a second reading. The select committee, which has publicly heard from more than 150 groups and individuals, is expected to report on its findings in February 2020.

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