POLAND – Polish abortion rights advocates reported to the police, but no charges were brought (yet)

0

POLAND – Polish abortion rights advocates reported to the police, but no charges were brought (yet)

by International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion
June 8, 2018

Dear Abortion Friends,

Some time ago we, the Abortion Dream Team (an informal group working on destigmatisation of abortion) and Kobiety w Sieci (community of women with abortion experience who run the online forum and support each other), found out that two anti-choice organizations had filed reports with the police accusing us of committing two kinds of crimes and asking them to press charges against us for our activities.

One supposed crime they accused us of was the Abortion Dream Team’s post on Facebook, which gives information on how to prepare oneself for a home abortion. We have not yet heard from the law enforcement authorities about that, but we do expect something to happen.

The second one was about the online forum and “illegal helping” of women to have an abortion that is punishable under Polish law. As a result of that, one of us, Justyna Wydrzynska, who is the online forum’s administrator, was called in for an interview on 7 June. At the end of the interview, no charges were brought against her, and we are under the impression that none will be. But it is probably not the end, as there can be more attempts.

We know that this is a backlash. The forum has been operating for 12 years. For a long time, it was done quietly. Thousands of women got support they needed. Recently, it became more visible. Women with abortion experience who also support others started talking about it openly and proudly. The anti-choice people could not stand it.

We won’t ever agree that giving information and advice on abortion access – how and where to order pills, how to take them, what to do to make abortion more comfortable and safe – and having support during this experience is a crime of “illegally helping” someone to have an abortion. We will never agree to such an interpretation. And we won’t stop doing what we do even if they call us criminals and press charges against us. We are doing good for women, and we will be there for each other always.

We receive a lot of support and solidarity from our allies in Poland. Today one friend initiated a Facebook action where people write: “I also give information about abortion. You won’t hear about all of us. You can’t lock all of us up. Today, we have all had the experience of abortion; today, we all are abortion supporters”. We are using the hashtag #jatezmowieoaborcji in Polish. In English it is: #IAlsoInformAboutAbortion.

If you would like to do the same, to declare that you are also people who tell others about abortion possibilities, that you also help others to go through abortion in safety and comfort, you can also use this hashtag. You can report what we have written here and also whatever you want. It would be great if you could use one of the hashtags: #jatezmowieoaborcji in Polish; #IAlsoInformAboutAbortion in English.

We would truly appreciate it. Solidarity is our greatest strength.

Karolina, Natalia, Justyna

SOURCE: E-mail, 7 June 2018
---------------------------------
From: http://www.safeabortionwomensright.org/poland-polish-abortion-rights-advocates-reported-to-the-police-but-no-charges-were-brought-yet/

Read more

Europe – Even where abortion is legal, access is not granted

0

Even where abortion is legal, access is not granted
In several European countries tough abortion laws are not necessary, as the lack of available gynecologists makes it almost impossible for women to access abortion.

Thursday 24 May 2018
Paola Tamma

Ireland will hold a referendum on 25 May, asking voters whether they want or not to repeal the so-called Eight amendment to the Irish Constitution, guaranteeing the equal right to life of the unborn and the mother, and prohibiting abortion in almost all cases, making it one of the world’s toughest abortion laws in the world.

But tough law is not always needed to actually restrict access to abortion: in some countries where abortion is legal, women face increasing problems to access it because non-objecting gynecologists are simply not available.

continued: https://www.europeandatajournalism.eu/eng/News/Data-news/Even-where-abortion-is-legal-access-is-not-granted

Read more

Poland – Rising support for abortion

0

Rising support for abortion

May 14, 2018

In April and May pro-choice billboards with the slogan “Women in Poland demand legal abortion” have appeared in different cities and towns across Poland. This campaign was organised by an informal women’s group, which managed to gather financial means in a crowdfunding campaign. The organizers and supporters wished to protest with these billboards against manipulative messages of the anti-abortion fundamentalists and to make their voice in the public sphere more distinctive. The billboards were meant to support pro-choice people in smaller, conservative towns and to empower them to show that they possess agency and can change the reality. Their action reflects a solid and growing support for the liberalization of the anti-abortion law.

The latest opinion poll conducted by IPSOS in cooperation with OKO.press, the online portal run by investigative journalists, reaffirms some continued trends, but it also surprises with new observations. The most crucial conclusions:

Continued: http://en.federa.org.pl/rising-support-for-abortion/

Read more

Poland’s conservatives are pushing one of Europe’s toughest abortion laws

0

Poland’s conservatives are pushing one of Europe’s toughest abortion laws
The bill would force women to give birth even in cases of severe birth defects

Apr 5th 2018
WARSAW

AT 13 weeks of pregnancy, Marta, a young woman in Warsaw, learned that her baby had Down’s syndrome and life-threatening defects. After a procedural obstacle course (including a visit to a psychiatrist), she was allowed to undergo a legal abortion, one of just 1,000 or so in Poland every year. Poland has some of Europe’s tightest restrictions on abortion, allowing it only when the mother’s life is at risk, or in cases of rape or severe prenatal defects. Many women turn to illegal abortions or go abroad, often to Germany.

Now the restrictions could get even tighter. Legislation proposed by a pro-life organisation, backed by the Catholic church, would ban abortion even for severe prenatal defects. The Polish parliament’s committee for human rights gave the bill the go-ahead last month, although the Council of Europe and UN experts have urged lawmakers to reject it.

Continued: https://www.economist.com/news/europe/21739996-bill-would-force-women-give-birth-even-cases-severe-birth-defects-polands

Read more

Poland’s abortion ban is a test case for the Catholic Church

0

Poland’s abortion ban is a test case for the Catholic Church
Religious conservatives across Europe will be watching the outcome closely

Agnieszka Graff
April 2, 2018

The crowd was an estimated 55,000 strong — most of the protesters were dressed in black, most of them were young women. They marched through central Warsaw on March 23 to protest against the parliament’s decision to proceed with an almost total ban on abortion.

It had all happened before, in October 2016 — one of this protest’s hashtags was #dejavue. But this time it felt different: angrier, darker, more politically radical, and openly aimed at the Catholic Church. The protests testify not just to the power of the Polish women’s movement, but to a profound change in attitudes. This time it is not just abortion rights that are at issue. Polish women have seen the broader picture.

Continued: https://www.ft.com/content/d3d92b9e-3348-11e8-b5bf-23cb17fd1498

Read more

Poland – Great mobilization on #BlackFriday

0

Great mobilization on #BlackFriday
March 24, 2018

March 23 is yet another historic moment in the Polish history. Renewed attempt to ban abortion in case of foetal impairment have brought almost 90 000 people to the streets of Warsaw, not to mention other 23 cities in Poland and 13 abroad. How did it start?

On the March, 14 the Polish Episcopal Conference appealed for the “Stop abortion” bill to be proceeded. A day later, the Head of the Committee on Justice and Human Rights announced that the opinion on the draft law will be issued on the next Monday (19.03). This illustrates the enormous power of the Church and the strong resistance of the politicians to put human rights over their own interests in the light of the upcoming elections in 2018 (local) and 2019 (national).

Continued: http://en.federa.org.pl/great-mobilization-on-blackfriday/

Read more

Polish Women Protest Proposed Abortion Ban (Again)

0

Polish Women Protest Proposed Abortion Ban (Again)

By MARC SANTORA and JOANNA BERENDT
MARCH 23, 2018

WARSAW — To Magda, giving birth would have meant inflicting a slow death. Her unborn child had a rare genetic syndrome that causes severe, fatal birth defects.

“I would feed it, hug it, love it, get attached to it, and then, when it would be 3 or 4 months old, it would suffocate while in my arms,” she recalled, explaining her decision a decade ago to have an abortion. “It would scar me for life. I don’t know if I would be capable of giving birth to another child and not look at it as if it were the one that had died in my arms.”

Continued: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/23/world/europe/poland-abortion-women-protest.html

Read more

Poland abortion: Protests against bill imposing new limits

0

Poland abortion: Protests against bill imposing new limits

March 23, 2018

Thousands of people have taken to streets across Poland against plans to further tighten the abortion laws, already among Europe's strictest.

A bill in parliament seeks to ban abortions in cases of foetal abnormality - one of the few exceptions allowed under the current law.

Continued: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-43514965

Read more

Mass protests in Poland against tightening of abortion law

0

Mass protests in Poland against tightening of abortion law
Thousands join demonstrations against government’s new effort to restrict access

Staff and agencies in Warsaw
Fri 23 Mar 2018

Thousands of people have joined protests in Warsaw and other Polish cities against the latest attempt by the conservative government to restrict access to abortion.

In Warsaw on Friday, people held banners that read “Free choice” and “A woman is a human being”, and chanted slogans demanding reproductive freedom.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/mar/23/abortion-poland-mass-protests-against-tightening-of-law

Read more

Thousands join ‘Black Friday’ marches against Polish abortion restrictions

0

Thousands join 'Black Friday' marches against Polish abortion restrictions

March 23, 2018
Anna Koper, Marcin Goettig

WARSAW (Reuters) - Tens of thousands of Poles dressed in black protested across the country on Friday against an attempt by the ruling conservatives and the powerful Catholic Church to ban most abortions.

The “Stop Abortion” draft bill, opposed by numerous rights groups, would remove the main legal recourse Polish women have for getting a termination in a country that already has one of the most restrictive abortion laws in the European Union.

Continued: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-poland-abortion/thousands-join-black-friday-marches-against-polish-abortion-restrictions-idUSKBN1GZ2LP

Read more