Norway – Instrumentalising women’s reproductive vulnerability for political gain: where in the world does it stop?

Instrumentalising women’s reproductive vulnerability for political gain: where in the world does it stop?
November 30, 2018

A move to restrict abortion in Norway is a particularly stark example of the readiness with which women’s reproductive vulnerability is traded as a kind of political capital

There is an extraordinary piece of instrumentalisation of women’s health for political gain going on in an unlikely quarter, just now.

Norway has both a relatively good record on women’s rights, and a balanced and popular abortion law with no popular or parliamentary mandate for change. It also has low and falling abortion rates, 80% of which are conducted as a woman’s choice under 9 weeks, and just 4%—far more tightly regulated than, for example, in either Sweden or the UK—in the second trimester.

Continued: https://blogs.bmj.com/bmj/2018/11/30/instrumentalising-womens-reproductive-vulnerability-for-political-gain-where-in-the-world-does-it-stop/

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Abortion demonstrations draw thousands across Norway after prime minister proposes tightening laws

Abortion demonstrations draw thousands across Norway after prime minister proposes tightening laws
Thousands joined demonstrations in cities around the country over politicians suggestion that abortion laws could be tightened

Alex Matthews-King, Health Correspondent
Nov 17, 2018

Thousands of Norwegians joined nationwide protests on Saturday as part of a backlash against proposals by the leader of the ruling coalition government which would tighten the country’s abortion laws.

Prime minister Erna Solberg, has suggested amending a key paragraph of existing legislation which allows abortions after 12 weeks where the child will have a “serious illness” like Down’s syndrome, or in some cases for multiple births.

Continued: https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/abortion-norway-protest-oslo-storting-womens-erna-solberg-christian-democrats-march-a8638966.html

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Thousands protest in Norway against restricting abortion

Thousands protest in Norway against restricting abortion
Thousands of protesters demonstrated in Norwegian cities on Saturday against restricting women's access to abortion, the subject of talks between the ruling minority coalition and a small party seeking to join the government.

17 Nov 2018

OSLO: Thousands of protesters demonstrated in Norwegian cities on Saturday against restricting women's access to abortion, the subject of talks between the ruling minority coalition and a small party seeking to join the government.

In Norway's capital Oslo, the demonstrators, some pushing children in strollers, marched through the city centre carrying banners with slogans such as "My body my right" and "Defend abortion".

Continued: https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/world/thousands-protest-in-norway-against-restricting-abortion-10941850

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Norway Will Negotiate Discriminatory Elements in Abortion Act

Norway Will Negotiate Discriminatory Elements in Abortion Act

November 5, 2018

Prime Minister Erna Solberg does not want to change abortion practice in Norway, but will remove “discriminatory element in the law”, according to Dagens Næringsliv.

Solberg has been criticized for her willingness to negotiate changes in the Abortion Act, as she needs the support of Christian Democrats (KrF) for her bourgeois government.

In an interview with the newspaper, Solberg says that women should still be able to use abortion right after 12 weeks if there is a high risk of the child having serious disabilities.

Continued: https://www.tnp.no/norway/politics/norway-will-negotiate-discriminatory-elements-in-abortion-act

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Norway plays politics with abortion laws

Norway plays politics with abortion laws

By Lisbeth Kirk
OSLO, 30. Oct 2018

Norway's conservative prime minister, Erna Solberg, has proposed tightening the country's abortion laws, in a political gambit that goes against Europe's liberal trend.

Her idea is to amend paragraph 2c in Norway's Abortion Act - also known as the Downs Paragraph, by reference to Downs Syndrome, a genetic disorder.

Continued: https://euobserver.com/news/143242

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1968: a revolutionary year – also for reproduction

1968: a revolutionary year – also for reproduction

14.05.2018
By: Nikolai Astrup, Minister of International Development, Norway;- Isabella Lövin, Minister for International Development Cooperation and Climate and Deputy Prime Minister, Sweden; Ulla Tørnæs, Minister for Development Cooperation, Denmark; and Anne-Mari Virolainen, Minister for Foreign Trade and Development, Finland.

This year, in 2018, it is 50 years since reproductive rights – including the right to decide whether to have children and how many children to have – were first formally recognised.

More than 200 million women in developing countries are still denied these rights.

1968 gave its name to a generation known for its ambition to change the world for the better. And a historic decision was made that year, a decision with the potential to fundamentally change the lives of all people – and of women in particular.

Continued: http://um.dk/en/news/newsdisplaypage/?newsid=c37e4a26-76ea-4256-82c6-00bd29def796

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Finland has Nordic region’s lowest abortion rate

THL: Finland has Nordic region's lowest abortion rate
3.11.2017
Fewer abortions are performed in Finland per capita than in other Nordic countries, according to preliminary figures from the National Institute for Health and Welfare used in a recent study at the University of Oulu.

National Institute for Health and Welfare, THL, reports that abortions among those under 20 years of age have declined steeply in recent years, and are now at half the level of the early 2000s. The agency's senior planning officer Anna Heino says there are many reasons for the downturn.

"Municipalities have invested in bringing the number down, health information classes have been obligatory in school since the early 2000s and the internet is full of accurate information on reproductive health and contraception," Heino says.

Continued at source: https://yle.fi/uutiset/osasto/news/thl_finland_has_nordic_regions_lowest_abortion_rate/9915409

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Norway to increase support for women’s health and safe abortion

Norway to increase support for women's health and safe abortion

Press release | Date: Oct 12, 2017

'Norway is at the forefront of efforts to promote gender equality and women's health at the international level. We are among the biggest donors to efforts in this field, but there are still many unmet needs. The Government therefore proposes an increase of NOK 180 million in earmarked support for women's health and safe abortion in 2018. 'This increase comes in addition to the major increase in funding earlier this year, in connection with the SheDecides initiative,' said Minister of Foreign Affairs Børge Brende.

Continued at source: Government of Norway: https://www.regjeringen.no/en/aktuelt/womens_health/id2574852/

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Refusal to Treat Patients Does Not Work in Any Country—Even If Misleadingly Labelled “Conscientious Objection”

Letter to the Editor: Refusal to Treat Patients Does Not Work in Any Country—Even If Misleadingly Labelled “Conscientious Objection”

On September 6, 2017 · In Perspectives
Christian Fiala and Joyce H. Arthur

We would like to point out some serious problems and contradictions in the study “Regulation of Conscientious Objection to Abortion: An International Comparative Multiple-Case Study,” by Wendy Chavkin, Laurel Swerdlow, and Jocelyn Fifield (Health and Human Rights Journal, vol. 19, no. 1, 2017).

The study purports to show that it is possible to accommodate health care providers’ “conscientious objection” (CO) to legal abortion while assuring that women with an unwanted pregnancy have access to health care services. The researchers examined four countries—England, Italy, Portugal, and Norway—all Western democracies with laws that allow CO for abortion. They conclude that England, Norway, and Portugal are able to permit CO by law and still provide and fund abortion care. Italy is the major exception, where access to legal abortion is seriously compromised due to a very high number of objectors.

Continued at source: Health & Human Rights Journal: https://www.hhrjournal.org/2017/09/letter-to-the-editor-refusal-to-treat-patients-does-not-work-in-any-country-even-if-misleadingly-labelled-conscientious-objection/

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Norway: Abortion rate declines again

Abortion rate declines again
March 12, 2017

A steady decline in the number of abortions performed in Norway continued last year, and it’s now well below the number in 1979, when the country’s law that liberalized abortions took effect.

The decline in abortions is significant, note state health care officials, because there are roughly 300,000 more women aged 15-49 living in Norway, and thus deemed fertile, than there were 37 years ago when the state abortion register was launched. That means there’s been an even bigger decline in the abortion rate in Norway, which now is set at 11 per 1,000 women.

The public health institute (Folkehelseinstitutt) reported this week that 13,169 women opted for an abortion in 2016. That’s down from the 14,224 abortions performed in 1979, when the population was much smaller than now.

Last year’s total was the lowest ever recorded by Norway’s Abortregister. Fully 87.5 percent of abortions in Norway are also now performed with medication, instead of invasive surgery, reported news bureau NTB.

Source: http://www.newsinenglish.no/2017/03/12/abortion-rate-declines-again/

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