AUCKLAND, New Zealand, July 18, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – In a dramatic and perhaps surprising turn of events, an attempt to shut down a pro-life club at Auckland University has failed after students turned out in droves to vote down the motion put forward by the executive of the university’s student association.
The motion to ban the club was voted down 227-125.
All members of the Auckland University Student Association had been invited to attend the Special General Meeting to determine the status of the club. The AUSA’s executive had called the meeting with the goal of denying Prolife Auckland the right to exist as an affiliated club.
President of ProLife Auckland, philosophy student Amy Blowers, said it was heartening to be vindicated by the wider student body.
“We had support from many students who are not members of our club and have no intention of joining. But clearly they recognized that freedom of expression is a right worth protecting for everyone, in particular in a university setting where academic freedom must be paramount,” Blowers told LifeSiteNews.
Ms Blowers said the AUSA had based its motion on a single anonymous complaint received in relation to a pamphlet called “Right to Know,” which the club’s members had distributed on campus. The pamphlet advocates for the right of women to know about health risks associated with abortion and the alternatives available to them when faced with an unplanned or crisis pregnancy.
Ms Blowers said ProLife Auckland and its many supporters had been surprised that AUSA’s response to the matter had not included the obvious step of informing the club that a complaint had been received. She said the club believes that denying them the right to make any kind of response to the complaint was unjust.
Ms Blowers said the club is very pleased with today’s result.
“Ironically, this attempt to shut us down has given us the chance to reach a far wider audience with our message, and that’s the whole reason that we exist as a club,” she concluded.
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