Population control in Questers
Population control in Questers takes a number of forms and is a response to traditionally high birth rates. The Communist government instituted a number of population control measures, including easy access to abortions, euthanasia on demand, and subsidised male and female birth control. Population control falls under the remit of the Home Office, and includes eugenics measures, including mandatory sterilisation. In addition to these measures, the state has a number of family planning laws and initiatives.
Questers population grew from 55 million in 1900 to 105 million in 1990. Questers does not enough land which is usable for agriculture to sustain, of its own account, its population: food self-sufficiency in Questers is one of the lowest in the world. The Questarian government considered it necessary to institute population control, but attempts to limit the number of children per family have failed for political reasons.
Abortion has been a particularly controversial issue, and Questers only completed its abortion plan in 2013.
Before 1991, abortions were only allowed if the mother's life was in danger or she was raped. After 1991 this was expanded to include genetic defect, and after 1998, any person earning under $1000 per month could claim circumstance as a legitimate reason for an abortion. After 2003, a woman could have an abortion if she could prove that the father was unwilling to marry. Abortions in Questers must take place before the third trimester, but are otherwise free of charge. Questers uniformly uses miscarriage-inducing medication for abortions.
Questers has seen high-profile attacks on abortion clinics. In 2004, an attack on abortion clinic in Jesselton killed 27, and in 2014 a similar attack killed 19. From 2015, the Police are obliged to provide round-the-clock armed security for abortion clinics. In areas where the Police have a shortage of personnel, the Shire troops are called in to provide armed security.
See also — Suicide in Questers
Questers has had euthanasia on demand from 2003. No reason needs to be given. An individual only needs to present a psychiatrist's note that they are mentally healthy to be euthanised. Individuals are usually administered with diamorphine before being given a fatal dose of barbiturates. Questers euthanises approximately 35,000 people a year. Their deaths are not recorded as part of the official suicide statistics.
There is still a strong social stigma for seeking euthanasia. More than 50% of attempted suicides did not seek euthanasia out of embarrassment or shame. Some people do not seek state euthanasia out of fear of pain, although the state guarantees the process is painless.
The Department of Health subsidises the production of condoms, spending $3 billion in 2014. Female contraception is freely provided, and health clinics provide free condoms on demand. The Department of Information spent $650 million in 2015 advertising and promoting condom use. Children are taught how to use condoms in sex education classes from the age of 15.
Questers has an active eugenics programme, which is divided into voluntary and non-voluntary sterilisation. Vasectomies are provided free of charge in the National Health Service. The state pays a woman who has had more than two children $2500 to be sterilised, and a woman who has had more than four children $5000.
After the birth of a woman's fifth child, sterilisation becomes mandatory. Sterilisation is performed on individuals with genetic defects, and individuals who have less than 70 IQ, although they may request a second IQ test. Sterilisation and chemical castration for individuals with HIV/AIDS is mandatory.