The Australian Greens have today announced their $15 million election pledge to make abortions accessible and affordable for all women across the country.
Larissa Waters, Australian Greens Deputy Leader and Queensland Senator announced their plans to decriminalise abortions as well as cutting back the out-of-pocket expenses associated.
"Abortion should be legal, accessible and affordable. Access to abortion is part of every woman's right to make decisions about her own body.
"Currently, there are problems with affordability and accessibility across the country, especially in regional areas, while in Queensland and New South Wales abortion is still considered a crime in some circumstances.
"In Queensland, just 1 per cent of terminations are carried out in the public system so many women face hundreds or even thousands of dollars in costs in the private system.
"There are only three private abortion clinics north of the Sunshine Coast, leaving women in some rural Queensland areas to travel over 1000 kilometres or up to 8 hours.
"Women subjected to domestic violence and financially controlling behaviour can face horrific difficulties in exercising their reproductive rights.
"Our plan establishes a Task Force on Abortion and Contraception to clear roadblocks to states providing abortion via their public hospital systems.
"To eliminate out-of-pocket costs, our plan will review rebates under Medicare and the Pharmaceutical Benefit Scheme to ensure they are adequate to cover the true costs," Senator Waters said.
The plan will also aim to ensure counselling providers are required to disclose their stance on a woman's right to choose.
"The Greens will introduce national legislation to ensure counselling services are upfront about whether they support a woman's right to choose," added Greens' candidate for the western Brisbane seat of Ryan, Dr Sandra Bayley.
"Deciding whether to have an abortion should not be made more difficult by misleading information from vested interests."