Australia's federal MPs should exercise their conscience votes in favour of the use and availability of RU486.
RU486 is safe and effective. The World Health Organisation and the AMA advocate for the availability of RU486, because it is arguably safer than the already safe surgical abortion procedure (both at the acceptable level of approximately 1 death per one hundred thousand). International consensus is that RU486 is also the most effective method of abortion for gestation at less than 7 weeks.
RU486 will not lead to increased abortions. A woman’s decision to have an abortion, whether surgically or by medication, is never taken lightly. There is no evidence to suggest that the introduction of RU486 would increase the likelihood of a woman terminating a pregnancy.
Access to RU486 should be a medical decision, not a political one. A politician who has no medical expertise should not determine a woman’s access to RU486. Instead, access to abortion medications should be determined by health professionals at the Therapeutic Goods Administration. The public interest is not served by having this important decision held solely in the hands of one man such as Tony Abbott, who is not respecting the separation of powers doctrine between his parliamentary role in forming legislation (in Government) and his executive role (as Minister) in charge of the Health portfolio.