The Health Promotion Administration (HPA) is drafting an amendment to remove the requirement for married women to obtain permission from their partner before having an abortion, which it hopes to present by March, it said on Wednesday.
Under Article 9 of the Genetic Health Act (優生保健法), induced abortion by a married woman “shall be subject to her husband’s consent unless her husband is missing, unconscious or deranged.”
A petition calling for the removal of the provision was on Wednesday last week launched on the National Development Council’s Public Policy Network Participation Platform, where it had already received more than 7,400 signatures as of yesterday.
A woman’s right to bodily autonomy should not be affected by her marital status, the petition says, adding that the risks and consequences of abortion are the woman’s to bear, and therefore should not be decided by anyone else.
Supporters of the law left comments online saying that the decision to have a child should be decided by both spouses, as marriage is a partnership.
HPA Maternal and Child Health Division senior technical specialist Chen Li-chuan (陳麗娟) told the Central News Agency that the issue has long been a topic of public debate.
In 2006, the agency wanted to change the wording in the provision from “agree” to “inform,” but after three revisions it still failed to pass, she said.
After the Executive Yuan on Jan. 1, 2012, promulgated an enforcement act for the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, it instructed the HPA to change the clause, as it contravened the convention, she added.
After years of collecting opinions, including a clause-by-clause consultation held last month, Chen said that the agency has decided to remove the clause requiring a partner’s consent.
It also plans to rename the act to the “reproductive health act” to remove the original title’s discriminatory connotations, the agency said.
The HPA is to further consolidate its gathered recommendations and hopes to complete a draft amendment by March, Chen added.
Phase 2 clinical trial results of the Medigen Vaccine Biologics Corp’s COVID-19 vaccine on Wednesday were published on the Web site of The Lancet: Respiratory Medicine, in an early preview before publication. The study paves the way for other nations to issue emergency use authorizations or produce the Medigen vaccine, given The Lancet’s credibility as a highly respected medical journal with a rigorous peer-review process, Medigen’s international affairs director Lien Chia-en (連加恩) said. Lien said that the study is important as it proposes methods for converting international units for efficacy comparisons. The methods have been used for correlating the efficacy of hepatitis B
Ambassador Theaters on Tuesday announced that its Breeze Center cinemas in Taipei’s Songshan District (松山) would close late this month after screening thousands of major Hollywood movies and local favorites over two decades. Ambassador Theaters, one of the largest cinema chain operators in Taiwan, said that Oct. 25 would be the last day the Breeze Center cinemas screen movies, adding that its lease expires on that day. “We sincerely appreciate the support and recognition from audiences in Taipei over the past 20 years,” the company said. “We look forward to seeing you again in the future.” The cinemas started operating in 2001, upon
LIABILITIES MULLED: New Taipei City Mayor Hou You-yi said Taipei would find out if the firm was legally registered, the guide was licensed and the weather was assessed The assets of Tian Da Local Nature Co are to be frozen after at least four people died after falling into the Beishi River (北勢溪) on an outing the company had organized on Saturday, the Taipei City Government said yesterday. Six people — two adults and four children — were washed away by a flash flood on the river in New Taipei City’s Hubaotan (虎豹潭) area. They were participating in a Nature Joy Camp outdoor activity with a group of 16 adults and 15 children led by a guide surnamed Su (蘇). As of 4:30pm yesterday, four of the missing had been
THREATS: Dismissing Beijing’s assertion that its military exercises only target Taiwanese separatists, Chiu Kuo-cheng said war has no regard for political affiliation In case Taiwan is attacked, the military will defend the nation and not stand by like “plastic toys,” Minister of National Defense Chiu Kuo-cheng (邱國正) said yesterday at a meeting of the legislature’s Foreign Affairs and National Defense Committee. Chiu was responding to Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Wang Ting-yu (王定宇) asking him to clarify his remark last week that “the military holds to the principle that we will not fire the first shot.” Wang asked Chiu whether he meant what he said literally or that Taiwan would not start a war. “The Republic of China will not start a war,” Chiu