House committee recommends conscience vote on abortion
BY BALFORD HENRY, Senior staff reporter
Saturday, March 28, 2020
THE House of Representatives' Human Resources and Social Development Select Committee has recommended that Members of Parliament make a “conscience” vote to determine whether or not abortion should be legalised in Jamaica.
The recommendation was obviously the likeliest response from the 11-member committee, chaired by Opposition MP and Roman Catholic Deacon Ronald Thwaites, after listening to the divisive views of more than 70 local and overseas institutions, individuals and emotional experts for a little over two years.
Editorial | Whither abortion reform?
Monday | March 23, 2020
IT IS not clear whether Parliament’s Human Resources and Social Development Committee, which hasn’t had a sitting in recent months, has concluded its hearings on reforming the abortion law and, if it has, what it has recommended to legislators. Its chairman, Ronald Thwaites, will shed light on the matter, as well as informing the public how the committee intends to proceed.
Perchance they are not yet done deliberating, it is this newspaper’s hope that the committee will be inspired by last week’s developments on the matter in New Zealand, which finds its way in their report, and embraced by Jamaica’s legislators.
How accessible is the abortion pill?
Published: March 12, 2020
By Machela Osagboro
“It’s like going to the shop to buy an item,” was how one woman described the ease of getting an abortion pill at pharmacies in Antigua and Barbuda. “I was surprised at how normal it was to get this pill,” said another.
In the midst of the current debate in the country surrounding the controversial and, sometimes, taboo issue of abortion, OBSERVER media decided to mount its own investigation by visiting pharmacies to see to test how easy or difficult it was to get ‘a pill’ to terminate a pregnancy.
The Radical Future of Self-Managed Abortion Is Already Here
“I remember one woman who arrived and asked, ‘Is this the clinic?’ And we were like, ‘What clinic?’”
By Amy Littlefield and Laura Gottesdiener
March 4, 2020
Lizy and the woman who helped her to end her pregnancy met at a Starbucks in León, the largest city in the central Mexican state of Guanajuato. Then a 20-year-old social-work student with curly hair and a heart-shaped face, Lizy, which is a nickname we’ve used to help protect her identity, felt nervous about discussing her pregnancy in such a public place. She was afraid she could be jailed for even considering an abortion, which is a crime in most cases in the heavily Catholic and conservative state. Enrolled in an exchange program in a city where she knew few people, she had no way to make the hours-long trip to Mexico City, the only place where abortion was legal at the time. She and her partner felt hopeless. “We were dying from fear, really, we were two frightened children,” she said later, seated in a park in her home city of Guadalajara. Finally, she had confided in a professor who told her about Rosalía.
U.N. group says Salvadoran women unfairly locked up for abortion crimes
Anastasia Moloney, Thomson Reuters Foundation
March 2, 2020
BOGOTA, March 2 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Three Salvadoran women put in prison for abortion-related crimes were detained unfairly and arbitrarily, a United Nations expert group will say in coming weeks amid growing calls for the Central American nation to ease its total abortion ban.
While the U.N. Working Group on Arbitrary Detention does not have the authority to order release of a detainee, rights groups hope its recommendation will put pressure on El Salvador to review cases of women behind bars for abortion-related crimes.
Revealed: US-linked anti-abortion centres ‘lie’ and ‘scare women’ across Latin America
Lawmakers in Mexico, Ecuador and Argentina demand action following “truly scandalous” misinformation revealed by openDemocracy..
12 February 2020
“Come on in my love, someone will be with you shortly,” a woman says, welcoming me into a ‘crisis centre’ for women with unwanted pregnancies in a suburb of Mexico City. "I'm going to give you a hug," she adds, with a kiss on the cheek.
The woman’s greeting is warm and it chimes with the centre’s online advertising, on a website called interrumpir-embarazo.com (‘interrupt-pregnancy.com’), as “a group of women who know how difficult it is to face an unwanted pregnancy”, who promise to “accompany you, with security and discretion”.
Women perform in favor of abortion before Mexican cathedral
Published January 6, 2020
By the Associated Press
MEXICO CITY — A dozen women wearing green scarves lined up in front the Metropolitan Cathedral in Mexico City’s central square on Sunday to call for legal and safe abortions throughout Mexico.
Abortion is highly restricted in the country of 120 million inhabitants, with the exception of the capital Mexico City and the southern state of Oaxaca, where the procedure is allowed up to 12 weeks of gestation.
To the sound of a metal spoon clanking against an iron frying pan, the women performed a variation of “A Rapist in Your Path” — the viral dance sequence concocted by the Chilean feminist collective La Tesis to protest violence against women. The moves are the same, but the words have changed; in this version, an “objector” stands in their path.
Costa Rica's president says therapeutic abortions will be allowed
December 12, 2019
SAN JOSE — Costa Rica’s President Carlos Alvarado on Thursday issued a technical decree that will allow for therapeutic abortions in the Central American nation, despite opposition from religious and conservative political groups.
On paper, a 50-year-old law allows a pregnancy to be terminated only if the mother’s health is at risk, but a lack of regulatory clarity at hospitals has meant the law could not be applied.
Mexico moves toward legal abortion, but women still face jail
30 Nov 2019
GUANAJUATO, Mexico: Martha Mendez and Susana Duenas were both teenagers when they committed their "crime": suffering a miscarriage.
Accused of having an abortion - which is illegal in all but two states in Mexico - Mendez was forced to ask her fetus for forgiveness. Duenas was jailed for seven years.
JAMAICA – Youth parliamentarians tackle abortion, violence and climate change
by International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion
Nov 19, 2019
At a sitting of the 10th National Youth Parliament, the young people representing youth groups from across the island, engaged in spirited debate on abortion, youth participation in the political process, youth violence, and climate change, making a number of recommendations for the Government to consider.
On the issue of abortion, the suggestion was made to have Jamaicans vote in the next general election on whether abortion should be allowed conditionally or unconditionally. They called for the matter to be given urgent attention in light of growing concerns about botched abortions, which are the third leading cause of maternal death in the country.