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Austria: petition to the Parliament for national abortion statistics. Bishops’ support

Already 53,600 people have signed the online petition “Fakten Helfen” (Let yourself be helped) for parliamentary establishment of official statistics on the number and causes of abortions in Austria. Launched last autumn, and supported by lots of institutions, including the Austrian Bishops’ Conference, this petition originated from the fact that in Austria there are no analytic statistics of abortions. The problem cannot be tackled since both the number of abortions and their causes are unknown. The Austrian Medical Association, the Ministry of the Family, and the Austrian Institute for Family Studies are favourable to their adoption, if sources are kept secret. Last January 17, the Parliament decided to ask for the opinion of the National Council of midwives again. Therefore, there is a longer time to sign the petition at the website of the Parliament. Aktion Leben (Action Life) is one of the promoters of the initiative; it reminds us that the petition “asks for anonymous statistics on abortions, their annual national publication, and regular scientific anonymous research on the reasons leading a woman to abortion, as foundation of prevention and for creating appropriate subsidies”. President of Aktion Leben Gertraude Steindl pointed out that “modern policy cannot go without statistics and cause investigation”.

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