MEDIA RELEASE: 13,285 Induced Abortions in 2017

​19 June 2018

Abortion Stats Up for Year Ended December 2017

“Today we mourn the 13,285 unborn lives lost, and the even more thousands of women and men whose lives have been touched by abortion,” says Voice for Life National President Jacqui de Ruiter.

“Abortion involves not just the killing of an unborn child, but also a significant loss to us all. We as whanau, community, and a nation have lost a part of our future. With 18% of known pregnancies ending in abortion in 2017, we have lost 18% of our future,” states de Ruiter.

For the last 40 years, these annual numbers have risen over 500,000 lost boys and girls – the hollowing out of our youth.

De Ruiter continues, “Alongside the lives lost, we also mourn those thousands of women and men who live with the scars of abortion.”

“Abortion is often sold as a simple solution to a complex problem, but it so rarely is. It is not a solution to abusive relationships, or to a society that doesn’t properly respect and support young and growing families. And abortion can leave in its wake so many more problems than it ever solves.”

Preborn children and their mothers deserve better. Our language needs to be more respectful for a woman’s pregnancy than using terms such as “un-wanted”.

We need an open and inclusive conversation about the complex issues surrounding abortion in Aotearoa. Instead of pro-abortion rhetoric from the 1970s, we could start being honest about: post-abortion trauma and harm, lack of informed consent, crisis pregnancy support, open adoption – partner violence and coercion.

It’s time to build authentic counselling and compassionate, means of support for women who seek a safe path forward for themselves and their baby. So that they can make a real choice, separate from the conveyor belt towards abortion.

“Voice for Life promotes the well-being of women and men and advocates for those who can’t speak for themselves and their families,” says de Ruiter.

We must do more to protect pregnant women and preborn children in NZ. Let’s work together towards a nation that is inclusive of all people, especially the vulnerable and powerless. Those without a voice to protect themselves.

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Key Facts

In the year ending December 2017:

  • 13,285 induced abortions were performed in New Zealand, 462 more (3.6 percent) than in 2016 (12,823).
  • The general abortion rate was 13.7 abortions per 1,000 women aged 15–44 years, up slightly from 13.5 per 1,000 in 2016.
  • Women aged 20–24 had the highest abortion rate (21 abortions per 1,000 women aged 20–24), unchanged from 2016.
  • 54 percent of all abortions were for women aged in their 20s.
  • Most abortions (64 percent) were a woman’s first abortion.
  • The median age of women having an abortion in 2017 was 27.1 years, up from 24.5 years in 2007.
  • 59 percent of abortions were performed before the 10th week of the pregnancy, up from 57 percent in 2016.
  • 18 percent of known pregnancies (live births, stillbirths, and abortions) ended in an abortion.

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