NSW abortion bill passes parliament

NSW parliament has formally passed controversial laws decriminalising abortion after a mammoth and heated debate that stretched out over several weeks.

After more than 40 hours of passionate debate and 102 amendments, the Abortion Law Reform Act 2019 passed its final hurdle in the lower house on Thursday.

It comes after the bill passed the upper hours 26 votes to 14 on Wednesday night after more than 40 hours of passionate debate and 102 amendments.


It was the third longest debate in the state’s house of review.

The bill, presented to parliament in August by independent MP Alex Greenwich, takes abortion out of the criminal code more than a century after it was introduced.

“With the passing of this bill, our parliament affirms that we trust women,” Labor MP and bill co-sponsor Jo Haylen said to parliament.

“We trust women to make decisions about their own lives and about their own bodies.”

It also allows terminations up to 22 weeks as well as later abortions if two doctors agree. An amendment was passed that recognised doctors performing abortions after 22 weeks can seek advice from a multidisciplinary team of hospital advisory committee.