Helensville prospects take on topics
Candidates wanting to be Helensville’s next MP have shared their views on some controversial topics – abortion and euthanasia.
Green’s Hayley Holt, Labour’s Kurt Taogaga and ACT’s Alex Evans think abortion laws need to be adjusted, but NZ First’s Helen Peterson and National’s Chris Penk have concerns.
Penk said he would be interested in hearing the views of those living in the electorate, but said he wouldn’t support a change to the current law.
Peterson said the high rate of abortion statistics in New Zealand were ’’concerning’’.
‘‘The New Zealand First party believes that abortions should be safe and rare,’’ Paterson said.
Taogaga said the decision to end a pregnancy should solely lie with the mother.
‘‘I believe that abortion should be legislated for under the Health Act and not the Crimes Act,’’ he said.
Holt said the Green Party supported the decriminalisation of abortion.
‘‘We trust women to know what is the right thing to do for their families. Abortion is a health issue not a criminal one.’’
Evans agreed and said the current abortion law in New Zealand was ‘‘archaic and an affront to the dignity of women’’.
Similar views were expressed by the candidates for their opinions on euthanasia.
Taogaga said he believed euthanasia should be available for those with terminal illnesses that impact their life to the point where they don’t have one.
He said there were ’’obvious caveats’’ that needed to be checked to ensure people weren’t just using it as a tool to stop being ‘‘a financial burden on their family’’.
Holt said her party supported a person’s right to ‘‘die with dignity’’, as long as medical and ethical safeguards were put in place.
Evans was supportive of euthanasia. He said having the option to end your life with dignity was a ‘‘fundamental liberty’’ that everyone should have.
Penk said proposals advocating euthanasia were ‘‘well intentioned’’, but there was a danger those most vulnerable in society could feel pressured to end their lives.
He said the issue would be handled as a ‘‘conscience vote’’ in Parliament. Peterson said she held no ‘‘firm’’ opinion on the subject and understood both sides.
A map of the Helensville electorate.