Funding abortion pills ‘right thing to do’: New Brunswick premier
New Brunswick Premier Brian Gallant is stopping short of calling on his provincial counterparts to offer abortion pills for free, but he says it’s “the right thing to do.”
After years of restricting access to abortion services, New Brunswick became the first province to provide universal coverage of the abortion pill Mifegymiso earlier this month.
“We believe access to essential medical services shouldn’t depend on a person’s postal code or income bracket,” Gallant said in an interview Tuesday before he addressed a so-called “shadow event” of the Council of the Federation.
Gallant said Mifegymiso, a two-drug combination that induces a medical abortion, will help improve women’s access to reproductive health care, especially in rural regions far from hospitals that perform surgical abortions.
“Not every region has the same type of access,” he said. “Mifegymiso is an opportunity to help with geographical access.”
Gallant said his government has been working hard over the last two and a half years to advance women’s equality and reproductive health care.
“We’ve pulled New Brunswick into the 21st century by getting rid of the two-doctor rule and other barriers to reproductive health, but there is still more to do,” he said.
“It’s all about advancing women’s equality, not only because it’s the right thing to do, but because studies show that it helps strengthen your economy and advance important issues like education and health care.”