Following the rejection by the Polish Parliament of the pro-life bill, the chairman of the conservatives (the governing party PiS) Jaroslaw Kaczynski announced on October 12th that the party will work to reduce the number of abortions carried out for reason of illness or disability.
“Nowadays there are around 1.000 legal abortions in Poland: most of them are for reason of Down syndrome. We hope it won’t be the case anymore. This is our aim. But we should prepare it. We need to convince the society and particularly women, and we are going to do it.” said Mr Kaczynski.
The current legislation on abortion allows Polish women to abort in three cases:
– When the life of the mother is endangered.
– When the pregnancy is a result of illegal action (rape).
– When the child has a serious medical condition.
In Poland, most of the abortions due to “serious medical condition” target babies with Down syndrome.
Whilst Down syndrome is not a lethal condition (persons with Down syndrome can live a long, full and happy life), Down syndrome is “heading for extinction” because of the high number of abortions carried out in Western countries.
Although the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union condemns “Any discrimination based on any ground such as (…) genetic features, (…) disability” (article 21), and forbids “eugenic practices, in particular those aiming at the selection of persons” (article 3), eugenic abortion for reason of Down syndrome leads to the progressive extinction of Down syndrome.