For more than two and a half years, the presidential bill on abortion has been in the parliament’s freezer, because the ruling party does not want to change the draconian regulations. After the tragedies in hospitals and street protests, it’s time for a change.
It has been 32 months since the president submitted his bill on abortion and since the Sejm is not interested in the bill. – Certainly, the president expects his bills to be processed without undue delay. Of course it is – comments Marcin Przydacz, head of the International Policy Office of the Chancellery of the President of the Republic of Poland.
In October 2020, a few days after the abortion verdict, Andrzej Duda proposed that instead of the abolished condition of severe and irreversible fetal impairment, the premise of lethal defects be introduced. If the baby were to be stillborn or die after birth, abortion would be legal. – If the president submits a project to the Marshal’s staff, he obviously recognizes that these solutions are good and worth implementing – says Paweł Szrot, head of the office of the President of the Republic of Poland.
The Sejm has been ignoring the powers of the president for three years now. The president himself on Friday, on the occasion of a children’s football tournament, when asked about his project, avoided answering.
Fear of doctors
Politicians, lawyers and activists say that this is not the way. – The president’s act will not save the health and lives of other women, because neither the case of Mrs. Izabela from Pszczyna, nor the case of Mrs. Agnieszka, nor Justyna, nor Mrs. Ania, nor the case of Mrs. Dorota, who died in the hospital in Nowy Targ, are cases related to this act – comments Katarzyna Kotula from Nowa Lewica. – We do not need artificially expanding the catalogs and pumping up some further premises, because what we already have today, we see that it does not work – adds Aleksandra Kosiorek, legal adviser, the group “Lawyers Pro Abo”.
If Andrzej Duda really wants to exercise his powers, a different law is urgently needed, women say. – He must abolish the prison sentence for assisting with abortion, it is necessary to decriminalize abortion – enumerates Magdalena Biejat from Razem. – Doctors would lose such an argumentative veil that they do not perform these abortions, because they are afraid of the prosecutor – emphasizes Kamila Ferenc, a lawyer from the Foundation for Women and Family Planning “Federa”.
Even worse, even those who perform legal abortions prefer not to disclose it. In 2021, Federa’s lawyers piloted about 700 abortions in Polish hospitals for reasons of life and health of the woman. But in the official statistics, hospitals showed 32 of them. – Women who terminate their pregnancy in Polish hospitals get in the documentation on the discharge that it was “induction of miscarriage” or, for example, caesarean section, which clearly shows that doctors are afraid to enter in the medical documentation what procedure they performed – says Natalia Broniarczyk from the organization Aborcyjny Dream Team.
Main photo source: tvn24