Polish MPs back even tougher restrictions on abortion

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Polish MPs back even tougher restrictions on abortion
If enacted, the ‘stop abortion’ bill would outlaw terminations carried out because of a congenital disorder of the foetus

Christian Davies in Warsaw
Thu 11 Jan ‘18

The Polish parliament has rejected proposed legislation to liberalise abortion laws, voting instead to pass proposals for tough new restrictions to a parliamentary committee for further scrutiny.

Poland already has some of the most restrictive abortion laws in Europe, with terminations permitted only when the life of the foetus is under threat, when there is a grave threat to the health of the mother, or if the pregnancy resulted from rape or incest.

Continued at source: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/jan/11/polish-mps-reject-liberalised-abortion-laws-but-back-new-restrictions

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Poland’s abortion debate back in parliament

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Poland’s abortion debate back in parliament

EURACTIV.com with AFP
Jan 10, 2018

Poland’s abortion debate was back on the agenda on Wednesday (10 January), more than a year after tens of thousands of black-clad women successfully took to the streets in the Catholic country to stop the tightening of a law that is already one of the most restrictive in Europe.

The Polish parliament, which is controlled by the right-wing Law and Justice (PiS) party, began debating two competing draft laws: one that aims to liberalise the law and another that seeks to ban abortion when the foetus is deformed.

Continued: https://www.euractiv.com/section/freedom-of-thought/news/polands-abortion-debate-back-in-parliament/

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How Poland’s far-right government is pushing abortion underground

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How Poland’s far-right government is pushing abortion underground
A year ago, mass protests in Poland defeated a new abortion ban. But the ruling party, supported by the church, continues to cut reproductive rights – leaving people at the mercy of the black market.

By Alex Cocotas
Thursday 30 November 2017

Barbara Nowacka first had an inkling that something exceptional was happening on the morning of the protests. It was October 2016, and a journalist she knew, a conservative, called to ask how it was looking. She told him she had no idea what was going to happen. The journalist told her that his two daughters had gone to school that morning dressed in black. Perhaps, Nowacka thought, this could be big.

A ban on abortion in Poland had been put forward in parliament six months earlier, and Nowacka, a leftwing politician and long-time social activist, was a leading figure in the movement to oppose it. Nationwide protests had been scheduled for 3 October, but like most people, she had little hope that they would succeed. Perhaps they would get a nice crowd, a little media coverage; but it would ultimately be a gesture. The law would pass.

continued at source: https://www.theguardian.com/news/2017/nov/30/how-polands-far-right-government-is-pushing-abortion-underground

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As PiS turns topic taboo, feminists get Poland talking sex

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As PiS turns topic taboo, feminists get Poland talking sex
As Poland shifts sharply to the right on sex education and women's reproductive rights, a feminist organization is fighting back with a campaign to get women talking. It's a start, one of SexEdPl's leaders tells DW.

Date 18.11.2017
Author Jo Harper

Barbara Baran, one of the main organizers of Poland's largest feminist Facebook group, recently launched SexEdPl, an educational campaign to explain safe sex to young Poles.

As the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) government plans to take Poland out of the Istanbul Convention on violence against women and education reforms shunt sex education off the curriculum, Baran believes that the time is ripe for a conversation about matters sexual in the deeply Catholic country.

Continued at source: http://www.dw.com/en/as-pis-turns-topic-taboo-feminists-get-poland-talking-sex/a-37643331

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Poland against UN standards on abortion and capital punishment

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Poland against UN standards on abortion and capital punishment
Oct 30, 2017

The ongoing battle around fundamental reproductive rights in Poland becomes even more fierce. Government’s attempts to criminalize abortions and make one of the toughest anti-abortion laws even stricter are expressed in its statement delivered to the Human Rights Committee.

Polish non-governmental organizations are deeply concerned about the official remarks to the General Comment No 36 on article 6 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights concerning the right to life. The General Comments refers to various aspects related to the right to life – from abortion and euthanasia to suicide to capital punishment and genocide. It clarifies how States that have ratified the Covenant are supposed to protect this right. Only two paragraphs – out of 22 pages – pertain to abortion by imposing the duty to provide access to abortion in case of rape, incest and fetal impairment. The document also underlines that “any legal restriction on the ability of women to seek abortion must not, inter alia, jeopardize their life or subject them to physical or mental pain or suffering which violates article 7”.

Continued at source: http://en.federa.org.pl/poland-against-un-standards-on-abortion-and-capital-punishment/

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Pro-choice “Save Women” bill with 500 000 signatures submitted to the Polish Parliament

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Pro-choice “Save Women” bill with 500 000 signatures submitted to the Polish Parliament
Oct 24, 2017

On October, 23 the “Save Women” Civic Committee tabled almost 500 000 signatures collected under the bill on women’s rights and conscious parenthood. The lower chamber has now three months to initiate a debate on the draft legislation. It is now the ruling party’s move to decide whether the draft will be sent to further proceeding – as promised in the election campaign, or if it will be rejected – as the practice up to now shows.

Continued at source: http://www.astra.org.pl/repronews/543-pro-choice-save-women-bill-with-500-000-signatures-submitted-to-the-polish-parliament.html

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Why ‘resist & persist’ is the perfect theme this September 28th, and everyday

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Why ‘resist & persist’ is the perfect theme this September 28th, and everyday

09/28/2017
Musimbi Kanyoro, Contributor

In today’s world, women’s sexual and reproductive rights, including the right to safe, legal, and affordable abortion are being attacked and rolled back by those in positions of power.

In far too many places, abortion remains an unspoken word, loaded with archaic beliefs about female sexuality and gender, wrapped up with stigma, shame, and discrimination. Take the Mexico City Policy, or global gag rule, for instance: it perpetuates shame and rewards silence, as international health providers that even use the word ‘abortion’ in informing women of their options will lose their funding from the U.S. government.

Continued at source: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/why-resist-persist-is-the-perfect-theme-this-september_us_59cd1400e4b095b7ae59d8f4

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U.N. Human Rights Committee Concerned by Poland’s Restrictive Abortion Law

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Nov 4, 2016, Center for Reproductive Rights (PRESS RELEASE)

Women in Poland may face risks to their health and lives as a result of the country’s highly restrictive abortion law—according to a report released today by the United Nations Human Rights Committee (U.N. Committee).

The U.N. Committee expressed serious concerns about the high number of women in Poland seeking unsafe abortions, which could put their health and lives at risk, because of the country’s restrictive abortion law. The committee also stressed its concern regarding the serious barriers that women who seek access to abortion encounter, including the lengths women are forced to travel to access services.

[continued at link]
Source: Center for Reproductive Rights

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Strict law pushes Polish women to have abortions abroad

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Published November 03, 2016 Associated Press

PRENZLAU, Germany – While the streets of Warsaw have been engulfed by vehement protests over the government's plan to further restrict abortion, individual Polish women are struggling daily to find ways of ending their unwanted pregnancies.

Monika, 19, had recently split up with her boyfriend when she realized with horror that she was pregnant. With no partner, no money and years of education ahead, she felt an abortion was her only option. But abortion in Poland is illegal in most cases and even when she tracked down a doctor rumored to bend the rules, he refused.

[continued at link]
Source: Associated Press

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Stop this crackdown on abortion in Poland

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by Krystyna Kacpura

As Poland’s rightwing ruling party seeks to tighten an already restrictive abortion law, there is a growing solidarity among women in the struggle for our reproductive rights

Wednesday 21 September 2016 09.00 BST
The Guardian

In my desk drawer, I have the signatures of 1,500 Polish women who support liberalising our country’s abortion law, which bans the procedure except in cases of rape, incest, foetal anomalies, or when the pregnant woman’s life is in danger. The signatures arrived too late – the day after our petition to support a more liberal law was due to be delivered to the Sejm, the lower house of parliament, but I won’t throw them out. I know what they represent – the growing solidarity among Polish women (and many men) in the struggle for our reproductive rights, a struggle once left to feminist groups working at society’s margins.

No longer. On Wednesday our fight will come up against another draft law – the “Stop Abortion” law – which has been put forward by the ruling Law and Justice party. Supported by the Catholic church, it would ban abortion in all circumstances except to protect the life of the pregnant woman.

[continued at link]
Source: The Guardian

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