Albury anti-abortionist Anna von Marburg hoping vote to stop gatherings outside abortion clinics is voted down

Flashback: Anna von Marburg outside Albury's abortion clinic in January 2015.
Flashback: Anna von Marburg outside Albury's abortion clinic in January 2015.

ABORTION opponent Anna von Marburg hopes a “miracle” will stop a bill, banning protests outside reproductive health clinics, becoming law in NSW.

Upper House members will next Thursday debate the bill which would ban demonstrations within 150 metres of medical premises, such as Albury’s Englehardt Street abortion clinic.

Mrs von Marburg has joined a regular vigil of pro-life adherents, known as the Helpers of God’s Precious Infants, at the Albury address.

She joined fellow anti-abortionists at parliament in Sydney on Tuesday at a function attended by conservative Upper House MPs, including Fred Nile.

Asked yesterday by The Border Mail if she thought the bill for exclusion zones would succeed, Mrs von Marburg was pinning her hopes on divine help.

“I don’t know, miracles happen all the time,” she said.

The bill’s joint sponsors, Penny Sharpe (Labor) and Trevor Khan (Nationals), both believe the bill will pass the Upper House and are upbeat about is prospects in the Lower House.

The earliest the bill could reach the Legislative Assembly is the first week of June.

“I’m quite confident we’ve got the numbers in the Lower House,” Mr Khan said.

“This is not something that has arrived in the last five minutes, it’s involved a lot of discussions over many months.”

Ms Sharpe said she was “cautiously optimistic” that NSW could join Victoria in having exclusion zones around abortion clinics.

In her speech introducing the bill to the Legislative Council on Thursday, Ms Sharpe savaged “sidewalk counsellors” who say they are offering guidance to pregnant women entering abortion clinics.

“They don’t care about those women, their actions do nothing to change the laws, and their behaviour certainly helps nobody,” she said.

Mrs von Marburg rejected Ms Sharpe’s critique.

“You don’t have to have a degree in counselling to offer somebody help, you can just be a decent human being,” she said.