Trump’s reinstatement and expansion of the global gag rule has harmful effects for women, men, and children

Trump’s reinstatement and expansion of the global gag rule has harmful effects for women, men, and children

Jan 11, 2019
Yana van der Meulen Rodgers, Ernestina Coast, and Nicky Armstrong

Two years ago this month, President Trump reinstated and expanded the global gag rule – the perennial Republican policy which cuts US funding for any organisation worldwide which offers abortion services or counselling. Yana van der Meulen Rodgers, Ernestina Coast and Nicky Armstrong argue that not only will the measure – which covers a pot of nearly $10 billion in funding for NGOs – be ineffective in reducing the number of abortions, it will also harm women’s’ reproductive health as well as making other crucial health services less available to women, men, and children around the world.

Who influences whether women in poorer countries can access abortions and other sexual health services? It may surprise you, but the US president has an important part to play. This is because of the so called “global gag rule”(GGR), a US foreign policy that cuts family planning and reproductive health assistance to any healthcare provider overseas which offers and provides abortions.

Continued: http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/usappblog/2019/01/11/trumps-reinstatement-and-expansion-of-the-global-gag-rule-has-harmful-effects-for-women-men-and-children/

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USA – Ensuring Access to Abortion at the State Level: Selected Examples and Lessons

Ensuring Access to Abortion at the State Level: Selected Examples and Lessons

Elizabeth Nash,Guttmacher Institute
Megan K. Donovan,Guttmacher Institute
First published online: January 9, 2019

The October 2018 appointment of Justice Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court has called into question the future of Roe v. Wade and abortion access in the United States. Just one month after Justice Kavanaugh took his seat on the bench, voters in Alabama and West Virginia approved state constitutional amendments intended to allow for additional abortion restrictions or even pave the way for outright bans on abortion in the event Roe is undermined or overturned.1

Although the changing composition of the Supreme Court has heightened the risks, efforts to restrict abortion are not new. Policymakers hostile to abortion have been working to undermine abortion care since Roe was decided. As a result, access to abortion already looks very different from state to state, and a person’s access to timely, affordable abortion care can be profoundly impacted by her race, socioeconomic status and available resources.

Continued: https://www.guttmacher.org/gpr/2019/01/ensuring-access-abortion-state-level-selected-examples-and-lessons

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Where U.S. Battles Over Abortion Will Play Out In 2019

Where U.S. Battles Over Abortion Will Play Out In 2019

January 8, 2019
Julie Rovner

With Democrats now in control of the U.S. House of Representatives, it might appear that the fight over abortion rights has become a standoff.

After all, abortion-rights supporters within the Democratic caucus will be in a position to block the kind of curbs that Republicans advanced over the past two years when they had control of Congress.

Continued: https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2019/01/08/682452994/where-u-s-battles-over-abortion-will-play-out-in-2019

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USA – The other abortion ban

The other abortion ban
I wanted to provide abortions for my patients. My med school wouldn’t teach me how.

By Stephanie Ho
January 4, 2019

Last year brought one of the toughest moments I’d ever faced as a family doctor. A woman had shown up for her appointment after a three-hour drive to one of our clinics in Arkansas, and we had to turn her away. A state restriction had gone into effect, requiring that abortion providers contract with a physician who has hospital-admitting privileges. It works by weaponizing antiabortion attitudes within the medical community.

My staff and I had been attempting to comply with the law since it was passed in 2015. We reached out to every OB/GYN we could find. Receptionists would hang up on us or refuse to take a message. The doctors who did answer said that while they might personally support a woman’s right to choose, their colleagues did not. One told me that for him to sign on as a backup, he’d need permission not only from his hospital administrator but also from the Diocese of Little Rock — “and after that,” he added, “the pope.” We finally found a willing obstetrician in November.

Continued: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/posteverything/wp/2019/01/04/feature/i-wanted-to-provide-abortions-for-my-patients-my-med-school-wouldnt-teach-me-how/

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USA – What Back Alley? These Women Say DIY Abortion Can Be Empowering

What Back Alley? These Women Say DIY Abortion Can Be Empowering
The pro-choice movement has portrayed non-clinic abortion as a last resort. But some women are trying to change that image.

Emily Shugerman
01.04.19

The image provokes both fear and fury: a wire coat hanger, spattered with blood, symbolizing the drastic measures women may take when abortion access is limited.

Whoopi Goldberg brandished one on stage at the 2004 March for Women’s Lives, urging the younger generation to remember what their forebears used. Protesters at the 1989 March for Women's Equality carried a giant replica, stained red, through the streets of Washington D.C. like a macabre parade float. And the symbol has been ubiquitous since Donald Trump’s election, popping up at marches, in the pages of glossy magazines, and on this site.

The imagery makes Jill Adams, founder of the Self-Induced Abortion Legal Team, shake her head.

Continued: https://www.thedailybeast.com/what-back-alley-these-women-say-diy-abortion-can-be-empowering?ref=scroll

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USA – Two New Reports on Current State Policy Trends

Two New Reports on Current State Policy Trends

Jan 2, 2019

Guttmacher policy experts have created two new reports documenting state policy trends on issues related to sexual and reproductive health and rights. The first report details state-level policies enacted over the course of 2018, while the second analysis—covering the years 2000, 2010 and 2019—examines the extent to which each state’s policy environment is either hostile to, or supportive of, abortion rights.

State Policy Trends 2018

Conservatives now have a clear majority on the U.S. Supreme Court, putting Roe v. Wade in jeopardy of being hollowed out or overturned. Against that backdrop, policymakers in a number of states continued to pass new abortion restrictions in 2018, including measures clearly intended to violate Roe by banning abortion at early stages of pregnancy. At the same time, more than half of all states adopted measures to expand or protect access to sexual and reproductive health care.

Continued: https://mailchi.mp/guttmacher/two-new-reports-on-current-state-policy-trends-937129?e=21353f4fbc

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USA – Reframing Abortion to Breathe Life into a “Culture of Death”

Reframing Abortion to Breathe Life into a “Culture of Death”

by Abby Minor
Published on January 2, 2019

January marks the 46th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, which is why tens of thousands of antiabortion activists are choosing, as they have every year since 1974, such a chilly time of year to travel to Washington D.C. for the March for Life, a gathering that has grown steadily since its inception to become the largest pro-life event in the world. As they’ve done for decades, march participants will use the leading pro-life event to express the leading pro-life idea, that life begins at conception; the notion is jauntily expressed by the theme of this year’s march, “Unique from Day One.”

For those of us who work to reduce abortion stigma, such claims can be frustrating and send us in intellectual circles. We know that we are neither evil nor confused, and that our experiences of abortion have been marked by wisdom and care. And yet how can we prove that abortion doesn’t end a life? How can we define “life,” or refute someone else’s definition of when a human life begins?

Continued: https://www.bitchmedia.org/article/talking-about-abortion/and-the-taboo-of-death-column-Pope-2

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USA – 4 Devious Ways States Chipped Away At Abortion Rights In 2018

4 Devious Ways States Chipped Away At Abortion Rights In 2018
The past year's restrictions were particularly extreme.

By Catherine Pearson, HuffPost US
12/29/2018

Every year, anti-abortion legislators and legislatures chip away at reproductive rights, and 2018 brought a wave of extreme restrictions from lawmakers determined to topple Roe v. Wade. This year, as of Dec. 11, 22 abortion restrictions were passed nationwide — a number that will likely edge up to 24 by the time 2019 begins.

On the surface, that number looks pretty good. It’s the fewest abortion restrictions passed in a single year in more than a decade, according to the Guttmacher Institute, which studies and promotes reproductive health policy. And for the first time in recent years, the number of proactive reproductive health policies — measures that make it easier for women to access abortion services and birth control, for example — outpaced the number of restrictions.

Continued: https://www.huffingtonpost.ca/entry/states-abortion-rights-erosion-2018_us_5c1be156e4b0407e907886b8?ec_carp=5444351490008681624

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USA – Here Are the Worst Abortion Restrictions Conservative State Lawmakers Passed This Year

Here Are the Worst Abortion Restrictions Conservative State Lawmakers Passed This Year
If you think the attacks on reproductive rights this year were a mess, just wait until 2019.

Dec 29, 2018
Brie Shea

Conservative state lawmakers passed a surge of unconstitutional pre-viability abortion bans this year in an effort to tee up a challenge to Roe v. Wade. These included everything from bans on the safest, most common form of second-trimester abortion to laws that would outright re-criminalize abortion. So far, the federal courts have proven to be the necessary firewall preventing conservatives from enshrining these restrictions into law. But Republicans spent most of 2018 vigorously packing the federal courts with judges they believe to be ready and willing to roll back abortion rights as far as possible—so that barrier might not hold in 2019.

Here’s a sample of some of the worst anti-choice restrictions passed in the states this year.

Continued: https://rewire.news/article/2018/12/29/here-are-the-worst-abortion-restrictions-conservative-state-lawmakers-passed-this-year/

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USA – A Woman’s Rights

More and more laws are treating a fetus as a person, and a woman as less of one, as states charge pregnant women with crimes...

Opinion
A Woman’s Rights
By The Editorial Board
Photographs by Damon Winter

DEC. 28, 2018

You might be surprised to learn that in the United States a woman coping with the heartbreak of losing her pregnancy might also find herself facing jail time. Say she got in a car accident in New York or gave birth to a stillborn in Indiana: In such cases, women have been charged with manslaughter.

In fact, a fetus need not die for the state to charge a pregnant woman with a crime. Women who fell down the stairs, who ate a poppy seed bagel and failed a drug test or who took legal drugs during pregnancy — drugs prescribed by their doctors — all have been accused of endangering their children.

Continued: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2018/12/28/opinion/pregnancy-women-pro-life-abortion.html

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