'Safeguards': Upper Harbour candidates on abortion, euthanasia
With election day fast approaching what views do your candidates have?
Auckland's Upper Harbour candidates Paula Bennett, James Goodhue, Jin An and Bruce Haycock weigh in on euthanasia and abortion.
Incumbent National Party MP Paula Bennett said both were "predominantly health issues".
"I am supportive of the current approach of high-quality palliative care for those who are terminally ill."
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She said the issue of euthanasia had been "very topical" recently, and she had an "open mind".
"However, I do have some concerns that any changes would require very strong safeguards in place to prevent any risk of misuse. I am supportive of the current approach of high-quality palliative care for those who are terminally ill."
She said she believed in a woman's right to choose and was comfortable with the current abortion laws.
The Green Party's James Goodhue shared a similar safeguard view.
He said he supported "medically-assisted dying" – provided "specific safeguards" were met.
This included a doctor's assessment of the individual, and an "independent medical practitioner" review to determine the patient was: "terminally ill"; "experiencing physical or pyschological suffering that is intolerable to them", and "has made durable and persistent requests for assistance in dying".
Goodhue said the Green Party supported "decriminalising abortion".
"It is dishonest and quite cruel to make women pretend that they're mentally unwell in order to access an abortion. It makes no sense to make people fake their mental health," he said.
Labour candidate Jin An said the current abortion regime was a "farcical affair".
"I think it should be made available as people are using the service anyway and are forced to pretend."
Both issues were about "what you do to your own body", she said.
An said "lots" of research and evidence from Canada and Germany should be examined, and learnt from, to "ensure" any availability of euthanasia could be "adequately controlled".
The ACT Party's Bruce Haycock said he was seeking an ACT Party vote and not a "personal" vote.
He said he had a threefold perspective on abortion: "value and sanctity of human life including the fetus stage"; "a woman must always have the right to a safe and legal termination of a pregnancy"; and "a woman should have the legal and social freedom to carry a pregnancy through to birth and free will adoption".
In terms of euthanasia Haycock said he supported leader David Seymour's draft private members bill. Although not ACT policy, it provided a highly safeguarded means for a person to legally request assistance to end their life in specifically described situations of incurable illness and "unrelievable" pain, he said.
Election day is September 23 and advanced voting begins on September 11.