Disturbing findings by Dr. Joanna Howe, a law professor at the University of Adelaide, reveal that over 800 babies were born alive in botched abortions in Australia in the past decade, potentially left to die. Limited government statistics show that between 2010 and 2020, 724 babies were born alive in botched abortions in Queensland and Victoria alone. Dr. Howe also discovered documentation of additional cases in Western Australia, South Australia, New South Wales, and the Northern Territory, bringing the total to over 800 in ten years, roughly averaging to seven babies every month.
Dr. Howe believes that the actual number is likely even higher as data is incomplete and anecdotal in other jurisdictions. Shockingly, federal law in Australia does not require abortion workers to provide life-saving medical care to babies who survive failed abortions. There is evidence that viable, late-term babies are being abandoned to die. Dr. Howe references a Northern Territory Coroner’s report about the death of a baby named Jessica, who survived a botched abortion but was left to die on a metal kidney dish in an empty room.
These babies are falling through the cracks because the law does not recognize them as human beings. Dr. Howe urges the Australian Parliament to pass the Children Born Alive Protection Bill to provide equal protection to newborns, regardless of the circumstances of their birth.
Similar concerns exist in the United States, where babies also survive abortions. Federal Republican lawmakers have been attempting to pass the Born Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act, but it has been repeatedly blocked by Democrats in Congress. Data on abortion survivors is limited in the U.S., with only a few states tracking such cases. However, evidence from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and personal testimonies confirm that babies do survive abortions. The CDC reported at least 143 cases of babies born alive after botched abortions between 2003 and 2014, but the actual number is likely much higher. Data from Canada and Ireland also indicate that babies are being born alive in botched abortions and potentially left to die.
These distressing revelations expose the urgent need for legislation to protect infants who survive abortions and ensure that they receive appropriate medical care.