Abortion, Corruption and Cops - The Bertram Wainer Story

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DURATION: 1 x 52 mins

Abortion, Corruption and Cops - The Bertram Wainer Story


In 1967 a young woman came to Dr Bertram Wainer's Melbourne surgery seeking emergency medical treatment after a backyard abortion. She was desperately ill yet too afraid to go to hospital. For Wainer this was the start of a long, hard struggle to overturn laws that made abortion an offence punishable by up to 15 years in jail. In the process he uncovered a web of corruption involving highly paid doctors, backyard abortionists, high-ranking police and power-broking politicians. It would lead to attempts against his life and the first major public enquiry into a state police force, as he fought to make abortions accessible, affordable and safe.

From the NFSA’s Film Australia Collection.

A Screen Australia National Interest Program in association with John Moore Productions. Developed and produced with the assistance of Film Victoria. Produced in association with SBS Independent.

© 2011 National Film and Sound Archive of Australia, Film Victoria.


John Moore
Penny Robins, Franco di Chiera
John Moore, Sue Seeary
John Moore
Screen Australia; John Moore Productions