Abortion clinic safe-access zones face challenge in Australia’s high court

Abortion clinic safe-access zones face challenge in Australia's high court
Campaigners challenging Victorian and Tasmanian laws argue they stifle free speech

Melissa Davey
Mon 8 Oct 2018

The validity of the safe-access-zone laws in Victoria and Tasmania that prevent anti-abortion protesters from harassing women seeking medical treatment will be challenged before the high court on Tuesday.

The Victorian case has been brought by anti-abortion campaigner Kathleen Clubb, who was the first person to be convicted of breaking Victoria’s safe-access-zone laws in 2016. The laws mean anti-abortion protesters cannot protest within 150m of health and fertility clinics. Clubb was fined $5,000 for communicating about abortion to a woman attending an East Melbourne medical clinic. Clubb’s conduct was found to be “reasonably likely to cause distress or anxiety”.

continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/oct/09/abortion-clinic-safe-access-zones-face-challenge-in-australias-high-court

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Three women stabbed in Chile pro-abortion march

Three women stabbed in Chile pro-abortion march

Bridie Chetwin-Kelly

Three women have been stabbed in Santiago, Chile during a march for free and safe abortions.

The women and a police officer were attacked by a group of people wearing hoods, leaving them with non-life threatening injuries.

Santiago resident and pro-abortionist, Ale Silva, told Newshub the group were men from a far-right group, and the Chile media ignored the attack.

Continued: https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/world/2018/07/three-women-stabbed-in-chile-pro-abortion-march.html

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Paraguay – Pro-abortion Activists Victims of Hit and Run in Ascuncion

Pro-abortion Activists Victims of Hit and Run in Ascuncion
Two pro-abortion advocates were hit and run as demonstrators gathered in front of the Argentine embassy in Ascuncion, Paraguay to support their neighbor's law

Published 13 June 2018

Two Paraguayan women were run over as they and 60 others demonstrated in favor of legalized abortion.

About 60 pro-abortion advocates had gathered on Tuesday night in front of the Argentine Embassy in Asuncion, Paraguay to support their Argentine neighbors as they vote on Wednesday whether or not to legalize a woman’s right to terminate her pregnancy.

Continued: https://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Pro-abortion-Activists-Victims-of-Hit-and-Run-in-Ascuncion--20180613-0018.html

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USA – I helped women get abortions for 28 years — through protests and shifting rules

I helped women get abortions for 28 years — through protests and shifting rules

By Joan Finn-McCracken
May 25, 2018
Joan Finn-McCracken is a former teacher and nurse practitioner. She was a director of Planned Parenthood clinics for 32 years.

One of the first patients who came to our family-planning clinic in Billings, Mont., newly opened in 1969, sought help after she and her boyfriend had hitchhiked 500 miles from Billings to Colorado to terminate a pregnancy. Colorado was one of the five states where abortions could be legally obtained. They had heard about Colorado through his older sister, and were able to borrow enough money for the procedure but not enough for a bus ticket. She was 17, unmarried and so desperate to return home before anyone missed her that she did not stay for her follow-up appointment. Now she came to us for follow-up care, as well as birth control.

Although I was the mother of five children and a graduate of the Duke University School of Nursing, and had taught in two nursing schools, I knew little about abortion. Our patient was afraid to go to her family doctor because she was not sure what was legal or illegal. And neither was I. But I did know we could not prescribe her birth control — it was against the law for anyone under 18.

Continued: https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/i-helped-women-get-abortions-for-28-years--through-protests-and-shifting-rules/2018/05/25/4f680826-5eb8-11e8-a4a4-c070ef53f315_story.html

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USA – Woman who shot Wichita abortion doctor, bombed clinics in 1990s released from prison

Woman who shot Wichita abortion doctor, bombed clinics in 1990s released from prison

By Judy L. Thomas
May 22, 2018

The Oregon woman who shot and wounded a Wichita abortion doctor 25 years ago and firebombed several clinics in three states has been released from federal prison, causing concern among clinic operators who worry her release could spark a new wave of attacks.

Rachelle "Shelley" Shannon, whose actions triggered a federal investigation into the possible existence of a nationwide conspiracy of anti-abortion terrorists intent on shutting down abortion clinics, left the Waseca Federal Correctional Facility in Minnesota on Monday and was being transported by bus to Portland, where she will be staying in a halfway house, according to her friends.

Continued: http://www.kansascity.com/news/local/crime/article211653329.html

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USA: The Murderer Who Started a Movement

The Murderer Who Started a Movement
Michael Frederick Griffin’s killing of Dr. David Gunn ignited a war on abortion providers. He could soon be a free man.

By Dahlia Lithwick
Oct. 31, 2017

Dr. David Gunn was 47 years old when he was gunned down in 1993 during an abortion protest outside his clinic in Pensacola, Florida. Today we think of this as the first targeted killing of an abortion doctor in America—the murder that led to passage of the FACE Act, which made it a federal crime to block access to clinics. It also established the battle lines in an ever more violent and nihilistic war against abortion providers, one that has led to the murders of nearly a dozen more people in the decades since.

Michael Frederick Griffin reportedly shouted “Don’t kill any more babies” just before putting three bullets in Gunn’s back. While the doctor bled to death, Griffin calmly surrendered to the police, saying, “I just shot someone.” Those attending the protest with Griffin showed no alarm at the shooting, a witness told the Washington Post’s William Booth: “It looked like they were just happy.”

Continued at source: https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2017/10/michael-frederick-griffin-killed-an-abortion-doctor-he-could-soon-be-a-free-man.html

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U.S.: Two Years Later, What Has Come of David Daleiden’s Accusation That Planned Parenthood ‘Sells Baby Parts’?

Two Years Later, What Has Come of David Daleiden’s Accusation That Planned Parenthood ‘Sells Baby Parts’?

Jul 19, 2017, 12:24pm Imani Gandy & Jessica Mason Pieklo

It has been two years this week since the anti-choice activist David Daleiden and his front group, the Center for Medical Progress (CMP), first burst onto the scene to accuse Planned Parenthood affiliates of illegally profiting from fetal tissue donations—or as Daleiden put it, “baby parts.”

The allegations were, and are, absurd. In fact, they are so absurd—and Daleiden’s conduct in editing and releasing the videos is so egregious—that amidst a flurry of lawsuits, a federal court just ordered him in contempt of court and handed him a bill for more than $130,000.

Continued at source: Rewire: https://rewire.news/ablc/2017/07/19/two-years-later-come-david-daleidens-accusation-planned-parenthood-sells-baby-parts/

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MISCARRIAGE OF JUSTICE: Young Salvadoran woman sentenced to 30 years for miscarriage

MISCARRIAGE OF JUSTICE: Young Salvadoran woman sentenced to 30 years for miscarriage

July 7, 2017

On 27 June we reported in the Campaign newsletter that a young girl, Evelyn Beatriz, at the age of 18, was the victim of rape in her community and became pregnant without realising it. She miscarried the pregnancy, without even having realised she was pregnant. When she went to the hospital for care, it was treated as suspicious and she was taken away to prison and charged. She was so frightened by everything that happened to her that she did not report the rape to anyone.

The case was heard yesterday, on 5 July. Her defence called for the case to be dismissed because she was innocent of any wrongdoing and there was no evidence that she had killed the baby. However, she was sentenced to 30 years in prison for “aggravated homicide” by the Tribunal de Sentencia de Cojutepeque.

Her defence team, Bertha María Deleón and Dennis Muñoz, expressed their disagreement with the ruling. They described it as “lacking technical arguments and based on prejudice”. They said “it was determined without taking into account that two expert witnesses, one in charge of the autopsy and the other in charge of the pathology study, pointed out that they had found the presence of meconium in the bronchia of the baby and this could have caused its death”. They also mentioned an irregularity that existed in the process, to do with contamination of the scene – that the police had washed the baby before it was examined by the Medecina Legal (Legal Medicine).

They said they will appeal the ruling and take it up to the Supreme Court of El Salvador if necessary.

This is only one of many other cases of women in El Salvador, mostly young and very poor, who have been sent to prison on such charges with little or no evidence. All over Latin America, women’s movement groups are condemning the courts whose judgements in El Salvador create an injustice through the lifelong sentences they are imposing on innocent young women like Evelyn Beatriz without just cause.

This court judgement is a gross violation of justice and of the human rights of all women who have miscarriages and stillbirths, for which they should never be held responsible in any form, and particularly not criminally responsible. We call on the government of El Salvador to pass legislation that will prevent women being sent to prison in this manner. We also call on them to decriminalize abortion, because it is the criminal law on abortion that the police and judges are confusing here and as a result are criminalizing any delivery of a pregnancy that does not result in a live birth. Lastly, we urge the human rights system in Latin America to offer to the government of El Salvador to provide the police and judges with training in these medical issues if they are going to continue to be forced to hear cases in which they have no medical expertise or background. This trial, like others before it, shows that the realities of women’s reproductive health matters, whether miscarriages, stillbirths or induced abortions, do not belong in a criminal court.

We are ready to organise international solidarity at the request of the movement in El Salvador.

SOURCES: Reportaje en español: http://www.elsalvador.com/noticias/nacional/370385/joven-condenada-a-30-anos-por-homicidio/, por Stanley Luna, 5 July 2017

For an in-depth analysis of all the cases in El Salvador like this one, see: Pregnancy and the 40-Year prison sentence: How “abortion Is murder” became institutionalized in the Salvadoran judicial system, by Jocelyn Viterna and José Santos Guardado Bautista, Health and Human Rights, June 2017, at: https://cdn2.sph.harvard.edu/wp-content/uploads/sites/13/2017/06/Viterna.pdf

For responses on Twitter from the women’s groups in El Salvador who have supported Evelyn Beatriz and all the women in prison like her, see: https://twitter.com/Unaflorporlas17/status/882723644660756480 and https://twitter.com/AbortoPORlaVIDA

Source: International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion: http://www.safeabortionwomensright.org/miscarriage-of-justice-young-salvadoran-woman-sentenced-to-30-years-for-miscarriage/

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UK: Stella Creasy ‘received Jo Cox-style death threat from anti-abortion activist’

Stella Creasy 'received Jo Cox-style death threat from anti-abortion activist'

Kate Proctor, Political Reporter
Thursday 6 July 2017

A London MP has called in police after receiving a death threat from an alleged anti-abortion activist saying she will die like Jo Cox.

Stella Creasy said she had received a torrent of abuse since forcing the Government to fund abortions for Northern Irish women arriving in England.

Continued at source: The Standard: http://www.standard.co.uk/news/crime/stella-creasy-received-jo-coxstyle-death-threat-from-antiabortion-activist-a3581291.html

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U.S.: The Abortion Battlefield

The Abortion Battlefield

Marcia Angell
June 22, 2017 Issue

Women Against Abortion: Inside the Largest Moral Reform Movement of the Twentieth Century
by Karissa Haugeberg
University of Illinois Press, 220 pp., $95.00; $24.95 (paper)

About Abortion: Terminating Pregnancy in Twenty-First-Century America
by Carol Sanger
Belknap Press/Harvard University Press, 304 pp., $29.95

If anyone thought that Donald Trump’s manifold inconsistencies might more or less randomly offer women some protection from the Mike Pence wing of the Republican Party—after all, Trump once said of himself, “I’m very pro-choice”—they were wrong. Trump, who was once in thrall to his resident misogynist Steve Bannon, remains dependent on Pence, his omnipresent minder, and women’s reproductive rights are in his sights.

Continued at source: NY Books: http://www.nybooks.com/articles/2017/06/22/the-abortion-battlefield/

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