It will also force conscientious objectors to make referrals without delay; "make clear that health practitioners may not refuse to participate in care required to save the life or prevent serious injury to the physical or mental health of a woman"; and "create a power in the Law for the Committee for Health & Social Care to make regulations making further provision in relation to the circumstances in which the right of health practitioners to conscientiously object to the provision of care in relation to abortions may be exercised."
Guernsey is a self-governing Crown Dependency for which the UK is responsible, located off the coast of Normandy. The new law will extend to Guernsey and its associated islands, but not Alderney and Sark, which are also part of the Bailiwick of Guernsey.
During debate on the propositions, according to the Guernsey Press, Deputy Richard Graham commented that "I regret that Health & Social Care have identified the UK as the gold standard to be followed, instead I would urge them to look to those countries that have low abortion rates, and seek to learn lessons from them, they are no less civilised, no less compassionate than we are, and they strike me as a far better abortion role model than the UK."
The Bailiwick Express reported that Deputy Emilie McSwiggan, a member of the health and social care committee, said: "What we are trying to do is find a way through that is as compassionate as it can be, which is as fair as it can be, which balances and reflects the choices that people have to make and allows people to make those choices safely and within the context of a legal framework that is clear and modern and fair."
Several amendments to the new law, which sought to reduce the proposed time limit on abortions or to maintain limits on the abortion of unborn children with disabilities, had been defeated June 19. The amendments would have retained the same time limits for the abortion of children with disabilies as of all unborn children; made clear that non-fatal conditions such as Down syndrome or cleft palate are not considered fatal foetal abnormalities; and changed the time limit for abortions to 16 or 22 weeks, rather than 24.
Earlier, a sursis motivé to stay the deliberation of the draft law and allow for broader public consultation had been defeated.