US asks for abortion references to be removed from UN pandemic response plan
By Kylie Atwood, CNN
Tue May 19, 2020
Washington (CNN)The Trump administration is urging the United Nations secretary general to remove any references to reproductive health, including abortions, from the UN's humanitarian response plan to the coronavirus pandemic to "avoid creating controversy."
"The United States stands with nations that have pledged to protect the unborn," acting Administrator of USAID John Barsa wrote in a letter to UN Secretary General António Guterres on Monday. "To achieve global unity toward this goal, it is essential that the UN's response to the pandemic avoid creating controversy. Therefore, I ask that you remove references to 'sexual and reproductive health,' and its derivatives from the Global HRP, and drop the provision of abortion as an essential component of the UN's priorities to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic."
Anti-Abortion Activists Are Winning the Coronavirus Pandemic
The pandemic has achieved what years of Supreme Court battles and hundreds of restrictions could not: it has choked off access to legal abortion.
by Carter Sherman
Mar 28 2020
Over the past few weeks, as vast swathes of U.S. society have shut down in an effort to curb the coronavirus, the pandemic has achieved what years of Supreme Court battles and hundreds of restrictions could not: It has choked off access to legal abortion.
The global disruption caused by coronavirus has become yet another battle in the American abortion wars, and it’s one that anti-abortion activists are winning.
Anti-Choice Politicians Are Using the Coronavirus Crisis to Deny Abortion Rights
And they’re succeeding in ways they never could, absent the global public-health nightmare
By David S. Cohen & Carole Joffe
Mar 25, 2020
Amid the coronavirus pandemic, while the rest of the nation is focusing on staying healthy and social distancing, anti-abortion politicians and movement leaders have been doing the only thing they know — pursuing an agenda to shut down abortion clinics. Capitalizing on the mantra to never let a crisis go to waste, they are succeeding in ways they never could, absent the global public-health nightmare.
The chief vehicle they have been using is shutting down what they deem nonessential health care. By now, most people are familiar with orders from mayors or governors that only essential businesses can remain open. Most places that have put these orders in place have also specified that medical facilities can no longer perform elective or nonessential procedures.
Anti-Abortion Groups Ask Trump’s HHS to Use COVID-19 Outbreak to Stop Abortion
Anti-abortion organizations had a list of suggestions for how the Trump administration could take advantage of the COVID-19 outbreak to cut off access to abortion care.
Mar 24, 2020
Officials from anti-abortion organizations asked the Trump administration on Tuesday to take steps to halt abortion access as part of the federal government’s response to the COVID-19 crisis.
Anti-abortion groups, led by Trump ally and Susan B. Anthony List President Marjorie Dannenfelser, wrote in a letter to U.S. Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar that clinics continuing to provide abortion care during the COVID-19 outbreak are “compounding one crisis with another.”
The US health secretary is making anti-abortion speak official government language
By Annalisa Merelli
January 24, 2020
The mission of the US Department of Health & Human Services is “to enhance and protect the health and well-being of all Americans,” according to its website. Yet its leader, Alex Azar, seems to believe the mission is to promote anti-abortion values and actions within the health system.
Today, Donald Trump became the first sitting president ever to attend the March for Life — a large anti-abortion gathering that has occurred annually for 47 years — just after his health secretary made a remark that equally showed the government’s commitment to oppose full reproductive rights. In a statement published last night, Azar, who also participated in the event, proudly shared all the moves made by his department to restrict access to abortion, including curtailing Title X funds and pushing back against the provisions of an international right to safe abortion.
New Obamacare Rule Will Require Separate Premium Payments for Abortion Coverage
Dec 21, 2019
On Friday, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released a new rule that will require insurers through the Affordable Care Act marketplace to bill separately for abortion coverage. This administrative change could affect more than 3 million people with abortion coverage.
If an insurance plan through the ACA marketplace includes abortion coverage, the insurer will be required to bill two premium payments: one for the health care policy and another for the policy’s abortion coverage. Here’s the full rule from the Federal Register.
The New Front Line of the Anti-Abortion Movement
As rural health care flounders, crisis pregnancy centers are gaining ground.
By Eliza Griswold
Nov 11, 2019
On the door of a white R.V. that serves as the Wabash Valley Crisis Pregnancy Center’s mobile unit are the stencilled words “No Cash, No Narcotics.” The center, in Terre Haute, Indiana, is one of more than twenty-five hundred such C.P.C.s in the U.S.—Christian organizations that provide services including free pregnancy testing, low-cost S.T.D. testing, parenting classes, and ultrasounds. Sharon Carey, the executive director of the Wabash Valley center, acquired the van in January, 2018, for a hundred and fifty thousand dollars, after finding a company that retrofits secondhand vehicles with medical equipment. That May, Carey began to dispatch the van to rural towns whose residents often cannot afford the gas needed to drive to the C.P.C. or to a hospital. Carey has selected parking spots in areas with high foot traffic, so that prospective clients can drop in to learn about the C.P.C.’s services. In Montezuma, she chose the lot outside a Dollar General. In Rockville, she discovered an I.G.A. supermarket frequented by the local Amish community; the van parks next to the hitching post where Amish shoppers tether their buggy horses. Driving straight up to the Amish farms would have been the wrong approach, Carey felt. The community is insular, and was unlikely to welcome outsiders offering their teen-agers free pregnancy tests or screening for chlamydia and gonorrhea.
United States Objects to Mention of "Sexual and Reproductive Health" in UN Resolution on Women, Says it Promotes Abortion
By Laura Powers
Shortly after a unanimous vote in the UN Security Council to pass a resolution on women, peace and security, the U.S. Mission to the UN, headed by Ambassador Kelly Craft, released a press statement criticizing references to "sexual and reproductive health."
The resolution referenced previously passed resolutions including the term, which Craft deemed unacceptable. "I must note that we cannot accept references to 'sexual and reproductive health,' nor any references to 'safe termination of pregnancy' or language that would promote abortion or suggest a right to abortion."
25 Years of Progress on Women’s Health Is in Danger
Because of course it is.
Words: Serra Sippel
Pictures: UN Women
Date: September 25th, 2019
This year marks the 25th anniversary of the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD), and without missing a beat the Trump Administration has pounced on yet another opportunity to renege on US global commitments to sexual and reproductive health and rights.
In the lead-up to the United Nations General Assembly high-level meeting on universal health coverage, which took place on September 23, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Secretary Alex Azar of the US Department of Health and Human Services sent a joint letter to governments asking that they join the US in rejecting longstanding global commitments to sexual and reproductive health and rights and gender equality.
UK announce £600m aid for family planning as US ramps up anti-abortion stance
Sarah Newey, Global Health Security Correspondent
23 September 2019
Britain announced a £600 million aid package for women's sexual and reproductive health and rights at the United Nations on Monday in the face of opposition from the United States.
Alok Sharma, the UK’s International Development Secretary, told delegates the UK would promote and defend “women’s sexual and reproductive health and rights” – despite the Trump administration circulating a letter calling for the phrase to be dropped on the grounds that it was being interpreted as a new international right to abortion.