The reversal of Roe V Wade in the United States has raised awareness of reproductive rights around the world - including right here at home.

In Australia, activists have fought for abortion to be taken out of the criminal codes of the States and Territories for decades.

Because of those activists, abortion is no longer a crime in Australia today. Thankfully, there is also widespread and bipartisan support for reproductive rights.

Although Western Australia was the first state to legalise abortion, it remains in their criminal code. That means, in the words of WA Health Minister Amber-Jade Sanderson, “women do fly interstate to access abortions.”

Reproductive healthcare also remains grossly underfunded. Abortions are only available at public hospitals in South Australia and the Northern Territory.

That means someone in South Australia could access an abortion for free in a public hospital, but someone in Perth might fly across the country, and pay thousands of dollars for one.

Surgical abortion is mostly available only in urban areas. So people seeking abortion in regional Australia face increased costs and more barriers to access - a disparity even greater for First Nations people.

Labor had a policy in 2019 to “work with States and Territories to improve the … provision of abortion in public hospitals.”

In June, Albanese government Minister Tanya Pllibersek would not confirm if the government would commit to providing Medicare-funded abortions.

That’s not good enough. We need everyone, everywhere to be able to exercise their rights to reproductive healthcare.

Abortion is a human right. Call for the Albanese government to work with the States and Territories to harmonise abortion laws, fully fund reproductive healthcare in public hospitals, and to cover the full cost of abortions on Medicare so that abortions are available and accessible to those who need it.