Norway – Instrumentalising women’s reproductive vulnerability for political gain: where in the world does it stop?

Instrumentalising women’s reproductive vulnerability for political gain: where in the world does it stop?
November 30, 2018

A move to restrict abortion in Norway is a particularly stark example of the readiness with which women’s reproductive vulnerability is traded as a kind of political capital

There is an extraordinary piece of instrumentalisation of women’s health for political gain going on in an unlikely quarter, just now.

Norway has both a relatively good record on women’s rights, and a balanced and popular abortion law with no popular or parliamentary mandate for change. It also has low and falling abortion rates, 80% of which are conducted as a woman’s choice under 9 weeks, and just 4%—far more tightly regulated than, for example, in either Sweden or the UK—in the second trimester.

Continued: https://blogs.bmj.com/bmj/2018/11/30/instrumentalising-womens-reproductive-vulnerability-for-political-gain-where-in-the-world-does-it-stop/

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Amendment to bill on grounds sought for abortion defeated in Dáil

Amendment to bill on grounds sought for abortion defeated in Dáil

Thursday, 29 Nov 2018
By Ailbhe Conneely, RTÉ News Political reporter

An amendment proposing that abortions are not sought on grounds of race, sex or disability under the Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy Bill has been defeated in the Dáil.

Following a lengthy and often tense Report Stage debate which began last night, TDs voted against the amendment by 71 votes to 21.

Continued: https://www.rte.ie/news/politics/2018/1129/1014230-abortion-amendment-dail/

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Abortion demonstrations draw thousands across Norway after prime minister proposes tightening laws

Abortion demonstrations draw thousands across Norway after prime minister proposes tightening laws
Thousands joined demonstrations in cities around the country over politicians suggestion that abortion laws could be tightened

Alex Matthews-King, Health Correspondent
Nov 17, 2018

Thousands of Norwegians joined nationwide protests on Saturday as part of a backlash against proposals by the leader of the ruling coalition government which would tighten the country’s abortion laws.

Prime minister Erna Solberg, has suggested amending a key paragraph of existing legislation which allows abortions after 12 weeks where the child will have a “serious illness” like Down’s syndrome, or in some cases for multiple births.

Continued: https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/abortion-norway-protest-oslo-storting-womens-erna-solberg-christian-democrats-march-a8638966.html

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Norway Will Negotiate Discriminatory Elements in Abortion Act

Norway Will Negotiate Discriminatory Elements in Abortion Act

November 5, 2018

Prime Minister Erna Solberg does not want to change abortion practice in Norway, but will remove “discriminatory element in the law”, according to Dagens Næringsliv.

Solberg has been criticized for her willingness to negotiate changes in the Abortion Act, as she needs the support of Christian Democrats (KrF) for her bourgeois government.

In an interview with the newspaper, Solberg says that women should still be able to use abortion right after 12 weeks if there is a high risk of the child having serious disabilities.

Continued: https://www.tnp.no/norway/politics/norway-will-negotiate-discriminatory-elements-in-abortion-act

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Norway plays politics with abortion laws

Norway plays politics with abortion laws

By Lisbeth Kirk
OSLO, 30. Oct 2018

Norway's conservative prime minister, Erna Solberg, has proposed tightening the country's abortion laws, in a political gambit that goes against Europe's liberal trend.

Her idea is to amend paragraph 2c in Norway's Abortion Act - also known as the Downs Paragraph, by reference to Downs Syndrome, a genetic disorder.

Continued: https://euobserver.com/news/143242

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UK – The ethical case against sex-selective abortion isn’t simple

The ethical case against sex-selective abortion isn’t simple

September 25, 2018
Jeremy Williams

A key theme in public debate over abortion in many countries over the last few years has been the morality and legality of sex-selective terminations. Now the use of an early prenatal testing technique in the UK has led to further concerns.

The Non-Invasive Prenatal Test (NIPT) is being fully introduced on the NHS this year, as a safe method of detecting Down’s Syndrome and other genetic conditions. But it has been internationally available from private providers for a number of years, and, as a 2017 report noted, is often offered as a sex-determination test. This has raised concerns that the test may be used to facilitate sex-selective abortion – particularly within communities where women can be subject to strong cultural and familial pressure not to have girls. The current legal status of this practice in the UK is a matter of some controversy.

Continued: http://theconversation.com/the-ethical-case-against-sex-selective-abortion-isnt-simple-103806

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Australia – Play confronts ‘grief for what might have been’

Play confronts ‘grief for what might have been’

By Carolyn Webb
12 September 2018

Emily Steel and her partner Chris knew what their decision would be if they found out their unborn baby had Down syndrome.

She told her loved ones about it, but she concedes that in "real life I tend to play my cards close to my chest".

That is until she made another decision, months later, that enabled her to confront "the depth of the emotion and the pain of it".

Continued: https://www.smh.com.au/national/victoria/you-re-not-alone-one-woman-play-tells-true-story-of-abortion-20180910-p502w4.html

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Irish abortion vote: ‘propagandistic’ use of children with Down’s syndrome condemned

Irish abortion vote: 'propagandistic' use of children with Down's syndrome condemned
Father, doctor and pro-choice campaigner accuses anti-abortion lobby of exploiting ‘vulnerable group’ in referendum

Henry McDonald Ireland Correspondent
Tue 22 May 2018

A doctor, author and father of a son with Down’s syndrome has hit out at Ireland’s anti-abortion lobby for using children with the condition during campaigning for Friday’s referendum.

With only days left before the Irish electorate votes on whether to introduce limited abortion into the state’s hospitals, Dr Chris Kaposy has condemned the “propagandistic use” of children like his son by anti-abortion campaigners.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/may/22/irish-abortion-referendum-propagandistic-use-of-children-with-downs-syndrome-condemned

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Ireland – ‘Very different situation’ – Harris ‘frustrated’ that ‘No’ side compares proposed abortion law to that of UK

'Very different situation' - Harris 'frustrated' that 'No' side compares proposed abortion law to that of UK

Shona Murray
May 14 2018

Minister for Health Simon Harris has hit out at ‘inaccurate’ claims by the ‘No’ side about the government's legislation should the eighth amendment be repealed in the referendum.

He said posters depicting people with down syndrome and other disabilities claiming these people were "only alive" because of Ireland’s restrictive abortion laws were “upsetting”.

Continued: https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/abortion-referendum/very-different-situation-harris-frustrated-that-no-side-compares-proposed-abortion-law-to-that-of-uk-36904203.html

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Ireland – Here are 18 heartbreaking reasons to vote Yes

Here are 18 heartbreaking reasons to vote Yes
The Eighth Amendment added to the pain and grief we suffered on losing our baby, writes David Hanlon

David Hanlon
May 13 2018

This is a short account of how the Eighth Amendment to the Irish Constitution affected my wife, our baby and me.

We lost our baby at 25 weeks gestation one year ago at a hospital in England. We have never known such pain and grief, and we hope you never will.

Continued: https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/abortion-referendum/here-are-18-heartbreaking-reasons-to-vote-yes-36901037.html

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