Decriminalisation not deregulation for SA abortion laws
Posted on Dec 5 2019
by Crispin Savage
The independent South Australian Law Reform Institute (SALRI) based at the University of Adelaide has recommended major changes to South Australian abortion laws in its report to the Attorney General published today .
“SALRI’s report recommends that abortion is decriminalised by making it a regulated medical procedure under health law as opposed to a criminal law issue,” says the Director of the SA Law Reform Institute, the University of Adelaide's Professor John Williams.
Slovakia rejects bill requiring ultrasound before abortion
Lawmakers in Slovakia have rejected a proposed bill that would have made it obligatory for women seeking abortions to first have an ultrasound and obtain the consent of the father before having the procedure
By The Associated Press
5 December 2019
Lawmakers in Slovakia have rejected a proposed bill that would have made it obligatory for women seeking abortions to first have an ultrasound and obtain the consent of the father before having the procedure.
The bill was submitted by three members of the conservative Slovak National Party. In its initial draft, the bill made it mandatory for women to listen to the fetal heartbeat where possible. After being debated earlier this week, the bill was rejected on Thursday.
Last month, more than 30 organizations, including Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, wrote to Slovak parliamentarians expressing their “deep concern” about the proposed law. They warned that if the legislation was adopted, Slovakia would be the only European Union country to impose such requirements on women in countries with legalized abortion.
Contraceptive Knowledge in the Mid-19th-Century United States
December 5, 2019
Circulating Now welcomes guest blogger Donna J. Drucker, MLS, PhD, Senior Advisor, English as the Language of Instruction at Technische Universität Darmstadt, Germany. Here, Dr. Drucker explores the changing availability of knowledge about contraception.
What do pennyroyal, fish skins, horse riding, and ergot of rye have in common? They are all contraceptive methods that have been used for centuries. In preliterate societies, information on regulating pregnancy was likely passed down orally from one generation of women to the next as they helped each other with pregnancies, births, and child spacing. In the mid-nineteenth-century US, however, more and more women were literate and information was more securely captured in print. Examining three mid-nineteenth century medical guides, available online and searchable in the NLM Digital Collections, shows the range of information available to those who could access and read books.
They Pushed Hard This Year to Curtail Abortion. Wait for 2020.
Another surge of stringent abortion limits is expected in state legislatures next year, highlighting a rift among conservatives about political strategy.
By Timothy Williams
Dec. 4, 2019
Months after state lawmakers around the country approved some of the most restrictive limits on abortion seen in decades, some states want to push still further.
Leading the way is Ohio, where Republicans are contemplating banning nearly all abortions from the time of conception, with no exceptions for rape or incest, and the highly unusual step of allowing women who have abortions to be prosecuted for murder.
In Brief: Berlin court fines gynecologist for improper ‘advertising’ of services under Germany’s amended abortion law
The conviction of Berlin gynecologist Dr. Bettina Gaber comes after part of Germany’s law on abortion was altered in
December 4, 2019
By Sylvia Cunningham
Dr. Bettina Gaber must now pay a fine of 2,000 euros for stating on her practice’s website that “a medicinal, anesthesia-free abortion in a protected atmosphere is also one of our services.”
This conviction comes after part of Germany’s law on abortion was altered in February. The revised paragraph 219a says doctors can state that they perform abortions but provide no further information. Instead they can direct patients to resources maintained by the German Medical Association.
The Politics of Abortion Is Entering a New Era
The Supreme Court won’t protect abortion access anymore. But thousands of activists will.
By Emily Douglas
Dec 3, 2019
America is a country that telegraphs profoundly conflicting ideas of how women should live their lives. There are five female candidates for president. Women are fully integrated into the paid labor force: Almost half of workers are women. Seventy percent of mothers with children work outside the home; the vast majority working full-time. Across income groups, but especially among low-income families, the wages women earn increasingly represent half—or more—of what their families live on. America depends on women’s labor, paid and unpaid, and expects women to dream big, just as men do.
And yet in 2019 alone, state after state has passed laws that, if enforced, would completely undermine the United States’ notion of itself as a country that embraces gender equality. These laws ban abortion, and they’re banning it as early as six weeks, before many women even know they’re pregnant. Alabama has banned abortion altogether, with only the narrowest exceptions. So far all these laws have been blocked by federal judges, but they will work their way up to the Supreme Court, where an anti-choice majority now holds sway.
Closing policy gaps for survivors of sexual violence
Unsafe abortion continues to contribute significantly to maternal mortality and morbidity in Uganda
To mark the 16 Days of Activism against gender based violence, Dr Kayondo Simon Peter, Obstetrician and Gynecologist, Project Coordinator for the FIGO Advocating for Safe Abortion project at the Association of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Uganda (AOGU), highlights how a policy gap is denying access to safe abortion for survivors of sexual violence, as well as other women.
Abortion Without Apology
December 2, 2019
Posted by Meaghan Winter
Discussed in this essay: Without Apology: The Struggle for Abortion Now, by Jenny Brown. Verso, 2019. 208 pages.
IN 1969, THE NEW YORK CITY HEALTH DEPARTMENT hosted a panel of 15 speakers—14 men and one nun—to discuss the possibility of creating narrow exceptions to New York’s strict anti-abortion laws for women who had been raped or faced other special circumstances. In the midst of the proceedings, an action group from the feminist organization New York Radical Women stood up to dispute the event’s very premise. The protesters shouted that they did not want to bicker over exceptions to sexist laws that controlled women’s lives; they wanted full reproductive freedom. A month later, the action group—now known as Redstockings—held its own hearing. There, 12 women, addressing an audience of several hundred, talked about their abortions. This abortion speak-out, the first of its kind, helped draw conversations about abortion, long shrouded in secrecy and shame, into the public sphere.
Sexual Reproductive Health: Role of Media
Dec 2, 2019
The critical role of journalists in bringing Sexual Reproductive Health matters to public attention, making government accountable and promoting good outcomes formed crux of discourse during a two day workshop for media executives on Sexual Reproductive Health Reporting organized by Marie Stopes International Organization Nigeria (MSION) on November 14 to 16 in Ibadan, the Oyo State Capital.
The workshop brought to the front burner the grey issues of unmet need, low use of contraceptives and its contribution to maternal mortality in Nigeria and other developing countries.
Fetal Personhood Is Maternal Punishment
When society values the life of a fetus over that of a living person, women pay the steepest price.
By Katha Pollitt
Dec 2, 2019
We often talk about abortion as if it’s a thing unto itself. If we connect it to anything, it’s usually to sex education, contraception, and other contested ways of preventing unwanted births.
What gets much less attention is the removal of everyday rights from willingly pregnant women. For opponents of abortion, who grant personhood to fertilized eggs, embryos, and fetuses, it’s not a stretch to go from saying “You have to have that baby” to “You have to produce a healthy baby, therefore your wishes, needs, and constitutional rights are of no account.” Moreover, if anything goes wrong, they’re going to assume it’s your fault alone.