Malawi: Priest Advocates for Enactment of New Abortion Law

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Malawi: Priest Advocates for Enactment of New Abortion Law

8 December 2017

With over 141,000 women in Malawi inducing abortions annually mostly through unsafe means, an Anglican Church priest has called for enactment of new abortion law. Below is an article by REV. FR. MARTIN KALIMBE published in the column on Sexual and Reproductive Health which Centre for Solutions Journalism is running in The Daily Times of Malawi.

Is the church in support of legalisation of abortion? This is a question which the media posed to me during a recent live debate on Television Malawi.

It was a difficult question to answer because the church is completely divided on the issue of abortion. There are also cases where members of the clergy within the same church are also divided on the issue.

Continued at source: http://allafrica.com/stories/201712080750.html

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UK: Men can now buy Viagra over the counter – but women can’t take an abortion pill from a doctor at home

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Men can now buy Viagra over the counter – but women can't take an abortion pill from a doctor at home
A spokesperson from the MHRA was quoted as saying they were glad of the change because it would prevent men from buying unregulated pills illegally on the internet. This is the same agency that does week-long raids every year on abortion pills

Holly Baxter
Tuesday 28 November 2017

Great news for Britain: men with erectile dysfunction can now buy Viagra over the counter, so long as a pharmacist agrees. What a fantastic coup this is for a country which has such a huge commitment to reproductive health – huge enough that our rates of death in childbirth still lag far behind many of our European counterparts, including Poland, Belarus and Greece. Huge enough that we still haven’t fully decriminalised abortion despite the recommendations of GPs, gynaecologists and the British Medical Association. Huge enough that Northern Irish women still can’t access abortion where they live (except in certain, extremely restrictive circumstances), and only won the right to access free abortion services in England this year. Doesn’t it feel great to live in real civilisation?

Continued at source: http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/viagra-buy-over-counter-abortion-pill-men-women-compared-a8080851.html

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No exceptions for health and rights: Women’s movements hold the key to get the world we want

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No exceptions for health and rights: Women’s movements hold the key to get the world we want
November 26, 2017
Musimbi Kanyoro, President and CEO, Global Fund for Women

In today’s world, women’s sexual and reproductive health and rights are being attacked and rolled back by those in positions of power. Take the Mexico City Policy, or Global Gag Rule, for instance, which has been expanded by the U.S. administration. It cuts off billions of dollars in funding for critical health services around the world like access to contraception or STD screenings.

However, women have never been known to sit and wait for change to happen. And while rollbacks threaten women’s health and rights each day, grassroots women’s groups and movements around the world are working to ensure that women and girls not only have access to critical health services that they need in their own communities, but understand their bodies, are aware of their rights and how to access them, and are safe from violence and discrimination.

Continued at source: http://www.thedailystar.net/women-action/no-exceptions-health-and-rights-womens-movements-hold-the-key-get-the-world-we-want

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Canada: Indigenous women on the Prairies deserve reproductive freedom

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Indigenous women on the Prairies deserve reproductive freedom
2 women take on Sask. Party leadership candidate's claim 'First Nations don't believe in abortion'

By Erica Violet Lee, Tasha Spillett
CBC News Posted: Nov 25, 2017

An anti-abortion group has quoted Rob Clarke, a former MP for northern Saskatchewan and a Sask. Party leadership candidate, as telling them 'First Nations don't believe in abortion. I'm First Nations and I don't believe in abortion.'

As Indigenous women, we understand why it can feel like a waste of our time to participate in electoral politics with governments that have little to do with our sovereignty as pre-existing nations.

But as Indigenous women in the Prairies, we know how often governments block access to the most basic reproductive health care for which we have always had rights and freedoms.

Continued at source: http://www.cbc.ca/news/indigenous/opinion-indigenous-women-reproductive-freedom-1.4418787

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Australia: When a woman can control when she has children, she can control her future

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When a woman can control when she has children, she can control her future
Chris Turner

In Australia we often take the access to contraception for granted. We have to talk about the right to reproductive choice for women globally

Friday 24 November 2017

With issues of reproductive rights being raised in the senate and abortion law reform on the agenda for the election in Queensland on Saturday, it’s time to stop and think about what it might be like if we had no choice in planning our own families.
Cory Bernardi's provocative motions on abortion divide Coalition
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Earlier this year my wife and I had our first child. She was 37 and I was 39. I couldn’t imagine being better prepared than we were and yet today our house looks like one of the Wiggles exploded inside it and we are both very, very tired. I often asked myself, how would I ever have coped as a teenage father? What would my life be like if I had not one, but 10 children? While I can never know the answer, my job has given me some reliable insight; it would probably be really tough.

Continued at source: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/nov/25/when-a-woman-can-control-when-she-has-children-she-can-control-her-future

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Ireland: Handmaid’s Tales at abortion committee

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Handmaid’s Tales at abortion committee

Justine McCarthy
November 19 2017

Forget science fiction — the eighth amendment debates are truly dystopian

Tammy Wynette was right — sometimes it’s hard to be a woman. Ever more so, these days, when 21 parliamentarians gather in Leinster House each Wednesday to discuss abortion. It’s a topic guaranteed to elicit deeply held grievances, frustration, feelings of victimhood, accusations of prejudice and spittle-licking outrage at perceived injustices, and it does — from men.

Women are in a majority of one on the joint committee on the eighth amendment to the constitution. When its work is done, all of them ought to be awarded a medal, regardless of their personal views on abortion, for their sheer endurance and dignity. For to sit in that room with a womb — or the memory of having had one — is to be subjected to a sort of medieval torture.

Continued at source: https://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/ireland/handmaids-tales-at-abortion-committee-f5fsw3rgq

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Ireland: Pregnant women, not lawyers, can best protect developing life

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Pregnant women, not lawyers, can best protect developing life
Abortion is an intensely personal issue. Behind politics, it is about reality and equality

Nov 17, 2017
Orla O’Connor

Women share their views and concerns about abortion with me every day. In my role as director of the National Women’s Council of Ireland, it’s possible that people feel more comfortable talking with me about the issues. Pregnancy touches the most intimate, tender and sensitive aspects of our lives. Abortion is an issue about which many of us hold complex and sometimes contradictory feelings. What I have learned is that everyone has their own understanding of pregnancy, and everyone has their own thoughts on what we should do about abortion in Ireland. The one ambition we all share is that we avoid a divisive and ugly public debate, that we can build consensus this time around.

Continued at source: https://www.irishtimes.com/opinion/pregnant-women-not-lawyers-can-best-protect-developing-life-1.3295906

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UK: Abortion is still illegal in this country

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Abortion is still illegal in this country
Fifty years after the Abortion Act, women are still dying from being denied basic services, write activists from Feminist Fightback

November 15, 2017

On the eve of the 50th anniversary of the Abortion Act, activists from Feminist Fightback found ourselves dressed as flight attendants, transforming the London Overground into the cabin of an Abortion Airlines Boeing 67. We distributed our own version of inflight safety cards and presented a special inflight safety announcement, advising passengers that ‘the exits…lead to an unsafe backstreet abortion and possible death…please assume the brace position for the duration of this Abortion Airlines flight”. We were met with whoops and cheers from passengers who, like us, are appalled by the fact that the Act still does not extend to the North of Ireland and that at least two people per day have to board a flight to travel to England to terminate a pregnancy. Fifty years on from the Abortion Act there are still people living in the UK denied this basic human right. This includes many migrants who, as NHS charges are introduced and health workers legally obligated to check immigration status, are deterred from accessing both abortion and maternity services.

Continued at source: http://www.redpepper.org.uk/abortion-is-still-illegal-in-this-country/

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Will Brazil’s Congress Turn Its Back on Women and Girls?

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Will Brazil’s Congress Turn Its Back on Women and Girls?
New Law Would Ban Abortion in Cases of Rape, Health Risk

Margaret Wurth
November 10, 2017

Hundreds of women have died in Brazil from unsafe abortion in recent years. Yet on Wednesday evening, 18 members of a committee in Brazil’s Chamber of Deputies – all men – voted in favor of a dangerous new constitutional amendment that, if enacted, could drive those numbers higher. The only vote against was a woman’s.

The new amendment would prohibit abortion under any circumstances. The current law in Brazil allows abortion if the life of the woman is at risk, if the pregnancy resulted from rape, or if the fetus has anencephaly – a fatal congenital brain disorder.

Continued at source: https://www.hrw.org/news/2017/11/10/will-brazils-congress-turn-its-back-women-and-girls

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USA: The Worrisome Future of Abortion Rights

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The Worrisome Future of Abortion Rights
Linda Greenhouse
NOV. 9, 2017

Sheriff Joe Arpaio used to require pregnant inmates in the Arizona jails he controlled to get a court order before being allowed out of their cells to obtain a desired abortion. Needless to say, he was sued, and needless to say, he lost. (The sheriff appealed to the Supreme Court, which refused to hear the case.) So he switched tactics to require any inmate who wanted an abortion to prepay the transportation and security costs, something not required for any other off-site medical procedure. The American Civil Liberties Union took the sheriff back to court and won again.

That seemed to be that. Following President Trump’s pardon of Mr. Arpaio three months ago for an unrelated contempt of court conviction, the 85-year-old former sheriff, a right-wing hero for his years of abusing immigrants, seemed finally about to fade from the scene.

Continued at source: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/09/opinion/the-worrisome-future-of-abortion-rights.html

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