Media Release 3 May 2019
A poll has found strong support for the unborn child having human rights and being legally protected once a heartbeat is detected (which can be between 6–12 weeks), and only a small minority thinking that life doesn’t begin until the child is born.
In the independent poll by Curia Market Research of 1,000 New Zealanders, almost half of those surveyed (47%) believe that a foetus should have human rights and be legally protected once a heartbeat can be detected (only 29% disagree), with the strongest support coming from Labour and National voters. 8% were neutral, and 15% were unsure or refused to say. 31% of those who generally support abortion agreed with heartbeat rights for the unborn.
The poll also found that one in three respondents (36%) believe that life begins at conception, a further 9% in the first three months, and only 18% think it is when the child is born, as argued by some abortion advocates. Surprisingly, only 27% of those who generally support abortion believe that life begins at birth. 21% of abortion supporters admit that life begins at conception.
Overall, women are far more likely than men to say that life begins at conception.
“This is evidence of significant support for the human rights and legal protection of the unborn child being well before what is being argued for by abortion advocates and the Government. The argument of viability is merely a determination of our technology and our ability to sustain life outside the womb, but that can change with the year and hospital in which a child is born. However, the heartbeat is the universally recognised indicator of life – can you find a pulse? – is their heart still beating? Using the measure of the heartbeat stops discrimination against the unborn child and applies the same measurement to all human life,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ.
“To deny the heartbeat and the message it sends is to deny science. The determination of viability can be as much as 90% wrong, while detectable heartbeat is as much as 99% right. The heartbeat is the most accurate indicator of whether a child in the womb will survive to live birth.”
“Instead of abortion stopping a beating heart, a beating heart will stop abortion.”
While abortion supporters are wanting to increase the number of weeks at which an abortion can be carried out, polling at the beginning of last year found that only 4% want more liberal time limits for abortion. This is in stark contrast to the proposed models put forward by the Law Commission to the Government last year, and completely repudiates calls by groups like Family Planning, ALRANZ and the National Council of Women who are promoting Model A which allows abortion on demand up to birth.
The nationwide poll was carried out at the beginning of April and has a margin of error of +/- 3.1%.