First clinic licenced

In 1975, the Wall Bill passed, but later that year, the Director-General of Health blocked its intent by licensing the Aotea Clinic. A later Supreme Court decision by Mr Justice Speight effectively nullified the legislation.

The Royal Commission on Contraception, Sterilisation and Abortion was established on 23rd June, 1975. SPUC saw this development as crucial and put all its resources into gathering evidence, bringing out expert witnesses and engaging senior counsels to present its case.

In 1976, the Gill Bill was introduced into Parliament and shelved. On September 26th, SPUC held its biggest ever pro-life march in Auckland. Torrential rain had poured all day, the organizers feared a low turnout. Despite the rain, an estimated 5,000 people assembled in Myers Park and marched out at 7pm down Queen St. There were so many that when the first marchers reached Customs St, the procession was still leaving Myers Park.

Television stayed away and in response to complaints about censorship, stated that the march was too late for the evening news and would be “stale” by the next day.

In 1977, the Royal Commission issued its report. Later in the year, the Contraception, Sterilisation and Abortion Act was passed, the Aotea clinic closed.