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Abortion Clinic Exclusion Zones Bill Passes In The NSW Upper House

Now it moves to the Lower House

Women are one step closer to be free to visit New South Wales abortion clinics without facing protestors or “sidewalk counsellors” after the safe access zone bill was passed in the Upper House on Thursday. 

The proposed legistlation would enforce a 150-metre exclusion zone around abortion clinics across the state and make an offence to interfere with a person outside a clinic in a way “likely to cause distress or anxiety”.

It would also make it an offence to film staff and patients without their consent.

Labor’s environment spokeswoman Penny Sharpe—who co-sponsored the bill—told crowds outside NSW Parliament that the move would help protect women from harassment from anti-abortionists.

“They basically they try and make it as difficult as possible for women to do the very basic thing which is seek medical treatment that is in their best interests,” Ms Sharpe said, SBS reports.

“They try to tell them that they are going to hell and that there will be moral and other spiritual consequences”.

According to ABC News, those in breach of the law could face up to 12 months of jail time.

Passed after six hours of debate in the NSW Upper House, the bill is now set to be discussed in the Lower House next month.

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