Prime minister Jacinda Ardern has issued a statement on today’s US Supreme Court decision repealing the constitutional right to abortion access.
“Watching the removal of a woman’s fundamental right to make decisions over her own body is incredibly upsetting,” Ardern said.
“Here in New Zealand we recently legislated to decriminalise abortion and treat it as a health rather than criminal issue. That change was grounded in the fundamental belief that it’s a woman’s right to choose.
“People are absolutely entitled to have deeply held convictions on this issue. But those personal beliefs should never rob another from making their own decisions. To see that principle now lost in the United States feels like a loss for women everywhere.
“When there are so many issues to tackle, so many challenges that face women and girls, we need progress, not to fight the same fights and move backwards.”
The US Supreme Court today issued a decision overturning Roe vs Wade, the 1973 ruling that enshrined the right to abortion access, thereby handing total power to legislate on abortion access to the nation’s 50 states. The decision has already triggered abortion bans in a number of states, and is set to make abortion illegal in nearly half of them within a matter of weeks.