.- The Spanish Committee of Representatives of Handicapped People has called a statute that allows for abortion of fetuses with birth defects âdiscriminatoryâ and âagainst human rights,â stressing that âone of the rights of the handicapped is the right to be born.â
Roser Romero, member of the committee, said the statute in the law on abortion âgoes against the rights of persons.â âIf nobody should suffer discrimination, and the current Government talks about equality a lot, that statute does discriminate,â he said.
Romero said abortion is a âdelicate issue involving ethical convictions and religious beliefs,â adding that the question is ânot about when life begins.â
âMany women do not choose abortion freely,â he added, âbut rather find themselves in a situation in which they donât know how to move forward, sometimes out of ignorance,â and âsometimes they are quietly pushed to abort by family members or doctors.â
âOne part of the problem is that handicaps are continued to be viewed as negative,â Romero went on. âNobody wants them,â he noted, but âpeople donât understand handicaps and what a person is able to accomplish if society will let them.â âIt is amazing that in this age of information, there is still a failure to provide access to such basic information as this,â he said.
Roser stated that even after a prenatal diagnosis that detects an abnormality, âthe doctor is not able to determine how much the handicap will affect the baby or how it will evolve after birth.â
He stressed that whether or not a handicapped person advances or regresses in development depends on the kind of care he receives and the means that are given to him. âIt is not the same to be born into a society that helps people as it is to be in one that leaves the problem only in the hands of the parents,â he said.