There is serious concern that the Bill now before the Senate to stop Medicare funding for sex-selective abortions is not getting a fair hearing and could result in a miscarriage of justice. We write to alert you to the current situation and to ask for your help.
The Bill known as the "Health Insurance Amendment (Medicare Funding for Certain Types of Abortion) Bill 2013" will be tabled in the Senate on 24 June 2013, yet it has not received a single public hearing! It was anticipated that public hearings for the Gender-Selection Abortion Bill would take place throughout May and early June after submissions were received in April. But the Senate Finance and Public Administration Committee has adamantly refused to hold any public hearings despite the fact that over 1100 submissions were received. Only 17 of these opposed the Bill. That means that more than 98% were in favour of the Bill being passed.
The Senate Committee has explained their refusal by saying there was no evidence that babies were being aborted in Australia because they were the non-preferred sex. Several media stories including this one have shown that this is not the case. From the poll conducted with this article, it is obvious that public opinion is massively on the side of our children with 95.90% of Australians against gender-selection abortions.
In fact Senator John Madigan and his staff have been supplying documented cases of gender-selection abortion in Australia. And yet the reason that the full extent of the problem cannot be stated is that current medical records do not include this information.
Normally, a Bill would receive a number of public hearings according to a range of factors. To show the disparity of what is taking place right now here are the numbers of submissions and public hearings of some recent Senate Committees:
Citizen's initiated referendum inquiry
Submissions received: 30
Public Hearings: 1
Inquiry into the quality of air in Australia
Submissions received: 150
Public Hearings: 3
Palliative care inquiry
Submissions received: 130
Public Hearings: 7
Gender-selection abortion inquiry
Submissions received: 1100+
Public Hearings: 0!
In response to this disturbing situation Senator John Madigan and his staff decided to conduct their own Forum in Melbourne to be held on Thursday (13th June). We encourage you to pray for this time, let others know about it and if possible to attend.
Here are more details as supplied in a letter from Stephen Campbell, Senior Adviser to Senator John Madigan, Democratic Labor Party Senator for Victoria:
INVITATION: Forum on the Medicare Funding for Gender Selection Abortions Bill
A Public Forum is to be held on Thursday 13th June between 10:00am and 3:00pm at the Royal Society of Victoria, Corner Latrobe St and Victoria Parade, Melbourne.
It will be held 12 days before the Senate Committee report is due to be tabled in the Senate.
The Committee is made up of Senators Helen Polley, Ursula Stephens and John Faulkner of the ALP; Senators Scott Ryan and Arthur Sinodinis of the Liberal Party and Senator Richard Di Natale of the Greens.
For those who are not aware, this Senate committee has refused to hold any public hearings despite the fact that a record of over 1100 submissions were received.
Senator Madigan will provide interested groups with information relating to the progress of the Bill, the Senate inquiry, the Submissions and the current position of the Parliament.
Every group that lodged a submission or has given support will be asked to send one or more representatives to the forum.
The Senate Committee and the Parliament have taken a hard line against the Bill and are attempting to stifle all debate. This forum will give us a chance to prepare a strategy on how to force this issue into debate and to continue it through to the next Parliament.
Can you please forward this message to everyone you know who has an interest in this Bill? Pro-life groups, religious groups, in fact anyone who you think would like to participate.
Tea, coffee and a light lunch will be provided.
Anyone interested can register by emailing me on : firstname.lastname@example.org
Stephen Campbell | Senior Adviser to Senator John Madigan
Democratic Labor Party Senator for Victoria
Electorate office: 17 Albert St, Ballarat. Vic 3350 | TEL: 03 5331 2321
In addition to prayerfully supporting the Forum in Melbourne we encourage you to:
Your taking action at this time is a powerful way to respond to the recently released "Manifesto to End the War Against Women" (see below). This was written by pro-life leaders at a Strategic Consultation on 20 March 2013 at Parliament House in Canberra with the following call for action:
- Write to your Senator right now requesting that public hearings for this Bill will take place. (Use this link to find the email addresses of your Senators by States)
- Send an info copy to Senator Madigan at his private e-mail address Sen.Madigan@aph.gov.au
- Send an info copy to the Senate Finance and Public Administration Committee email@example.com
"We urge the government and the people of Australia to:
- Respond urgently to the tragedy of Gendercide both in Australia and the world.
- Move to ensure that this discriminatory practice is exposed and comes to an end in Australia.
- Support any bill by any parliamentarian to stop Medicare funding of gender-selective abortions."
Finally, praise God for Senator John Madigan who describes himself as "unashamedly pro-life" and has courageously put forward this controversial bill. In his maiden speech to the Senate on 25 August, 2011, he denounced "inhumane" abortion laws. In his more recent speech, titled 'Integrity in Politics' he said "I'd like to point out, there is no such thing as a safe abortion. Someone always dies." Pray for God's strength and protection as he takes this courageous stand for the life of the unborn.
Yes, the battle for pro-life issues in Australia continues and it is intense. Yet we believe that as we pray to God, and take action in His name, this battle for the lives of our unborn baby girls and boys can be won!
Yours for a Life Breakthrough,
David Rowsome and Warwick Marsh
P.S. We give you some advance notice that you will receive another letter from us in the next few days inviting you to attend a free screening of Absent. This is a new documentary about the importance of fathers and the affects of fatherlessness. The Premiere Absent Australian Movie Tour starts on 13 June in Sydney and finishes in Perth on 29 June 2013. Information on the screening locations can be found at www.absentmovie.com.au