by Steven Ertelt
January 17, 2006
Canberra, Australia (LifeNews.com) — The Australian government is dismissing thousands of letters from pro-life advocates who have written in opposing the use of the dangerous abortion drug RU 486 because they are the result of pro-life groups urging citizens to sign form letters.
The committee looking into who can approve or reject the use of the abortion drug has received 4,000 letters. Some 1,500 of them are communications from pro-life advocates who signed form letters.
The Herald Sun newspaper reports that they "will not be considered by the committee because they fall outside the scope of the inquiry" of the committee. The panel is investigating whether Health Minister Tony Abbot can reject requests to use the abortion drug or if they should go to the Therapeutic Goods Administration.
Next week the panel will hold a two day hearing on the issue and next month abortion advocates are expected to introduce a bill to allow the TGA to make the decisions and a second bill legalizing use of the abortion drug.
The newspaper reported that the pro-life letters called RU 486 "chemical warfare" and that others said they would pose health problems for women.
Democrats senator Lyn Allison, who is heading up the legislative effort to legalize RU 486 called the pro-life efforts a "scare campaign."
But Nationals Senator, Barnaby Joyce, says all opinions should be taken into account.
"The ones that address the issue as they see it needs to be addressed should not be dismissed because you believe that they’re outside the scheme of engagement," he said.
"For a lot of people this is probably the most important issue on the political calendar and these people should be given the dignity of a response of their time to put their submission to the committee, I think it reflects the gravity of the issue and how people hold it."
Just 100 letters from abortion advocates have been received.