International Law Demands the U.S. Do Better on Abortion Policy

International Law Demands the U.S. Do Better on Abortion Policy

February 11, 2019
by Danielle Hites

Within days of assuming office in 2017, President Trump re-instated and expanded the Global Gag Rule, which restricts funding for international organizations that provide or “promote” abortions. Two years later, feminist lawmakers serving in the now Democratic-led House kicked off their own terms by attempting to roll it back.

Pending legislation to establish a budget and keep the government open beyond the three week negotiation period includes a provision that would protect NGOs from being categorically defunded, effectively rescinding the Global Gag Rule. The House spending bill would render health and medical services of such organizations, including counseling and referral services, as insufficient for the sole basis for ineligibility for U.S. funding, and allow NGOs to use non-U.S. funding with fewer regulations.

Continued: http://msmagazine.com/blog/2019/02/11/international-law-demands-u-s-better-abortion-policy/

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USA – I’ve witnessed the devastating effects of Trump’s global gag rule. Congress must act.

I’ve witnessed the devastating effects of Trump’s global gag rule. Congress must act.

By Melvine P. Ouyo
February 8, 2019

First, do no harm.

It’s a principle that has stood the test of thousands of years of practicing medicine. A principle that transcends politics and partisanship and cuts to the core of what medical providers do every day: provide. Help people.

Continued; https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/02/08/ive-witnessed-devastating-effects-trumps-global-gag-rule-congress-must-act/?utm_term=.01b4c98e682c

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The Global Gag Rule Has Put Women in Danger for Decades. Here’s How We Can Stop It.

The Global Gag Rule Has Put Women in Danger for Decades. Here’s How We Can Stop It.
The Global HER Act would remove reckless restrictions on international recipients of U.S. funding.

Feb 7, 2019
Vanessa Rios & Nina Besser Doorley

On January 23, 2017, President Trump reinstated the “global gag rule,” singlehandedly undermining women’s health worldwide with a stroke of his pen. The policy prohibits any U.S. global health funding to nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) that provide, counsel, refer, or advocate for abortion—even with their own funds—resulting in life-threatening consequences.

While previous iterations of the global gag rule covered only family planning spending, President Trump expanded it to cover all global health funds—a staggering $9 billion per year to NGOs that cover a range of health needs, from maternal and child health to malaria treatment. Even in its more limited forms, the policy backfired, increasing unintended pregnancies, maternal mortality, and unsafe abortions. Evidence suggests that the current version is producing a similar effect on an even larger scale.

Continued: https://rewire.news/article/2019/02/07/the-global-gag-rule-has-put-women-in-danger-for-decades-heres-how-we-can-stop-it/

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USA – Trump and Pence give surprise addresses at anti-abortion March for Life

Trump and Pence give surprise addresses at anti-abortion March for Life

by Julie Zauzmer , Marisa Iati and Michelle Boorstein
January 18, 2019

President Trump and Vice President Pence surprised thousands of protesters demonstrating against abortion on the National Mall by making unannounced speeches at Friday’s March for Life.

Pence and his wife, Second Lady Karen Pence, strode out onstage to the delighted cheers of a roaring crowd carrying anti-abortion posters and banners. Then Pence concluded his remarks with a second surprise: Trump, who addressed the march by video feed last year, had again prepared videotaped remarks for the marchers.

Continued: https://www.washingtonpost.com/religion/2019/01/18/march-life-says-its-pro-science-despite-medical-consensus-favoring-abortion-access/

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Trump’s reinstatement and expansion of the global gag rule has harmful effects for women, men, and children

Trump’s reinstatement and expansion of the global gag rule has harmful effects for women, men, and children

Jan 11, 2019
Yana van der Meulen Rodgers, Ernestina Coast, and Nicky Armstrong

Two years ago this month, President Trump reinstated and expanded the global gag rule – the perennial Republican policy which cuts US funding for any organisation worldwide which offers abortion services or counselling. Yana van der Meulen Rodgers, Ernestina Coast and Nicky Armstrong argue that not only will the measure – which covers a pot of nearly $10 billion in funding for NGOs – be ineffective in reducing the number of abortions, it will also harm women’s’ reproductive health as well as making other crucial health services less available to women, men, and children around the world.

Who influences whether women in poorer countries can access abortions and other sexual health services? It may surprise you, but the US president has an important part to play. This is because of the so called “global gag rule”(GGR), a US foreign policy that cuts family planning and reproductive health assistance to any healthcare provider overseas which offers and provides abortions.

Continued: http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/usappblog/2019/01/11/trumps-reinstatement-and-expansion-of-the-global-gag-rule-has-harmful-effects-for-women-men-and-children/

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US left isolated at UN over stance on abortion and refugees

US left isolated at UN over stance on abortion and refugees
Only Hungary backed the United States and voted against an annual resolution on the work of the UN refugee agency

Reuters at the United Nations
Mon 17 Dec 2018

The United States has found itself isolated at the 193-member United Nations general assembly over Washington’s concerns about the promotion of abortion and a voluntary plan to address the global refugee crisis.

Only Hungary backed the United States and voted against an annual resolution on the work of the UN refugee agency, while 181 countries voted in favor and three abstained. The resolution has generally been approved by consensus for more than 60 years.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/dec/17/us-united-nations-isolated-abortion-refugees

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How a Change in U.S. Abortion Policy Threatens Lives in Malawi

How a Change in U.S. Abortion Policy Threatens Lives in Malawi

Hannah Evans, Population, Health, and Environment Specialist
Posted on November 9, 2018

“On average, in a day, sometimes we handle about ten women related to abortion cases,” Sylvester Zimba explains to a reporter from Vice News in August of 2017. Zimba is a nurse who specializes in post-abortion care at Kasungu District Hospital, a small clinic in rural Malawi and the sole medical facility for 600,000 people.

Zimba explains that many women come to the clinic claiming they have experienced a spontaneous abortion despite what a later examination usually reveals: informal, induced procedures generally referred to as “back alley abortions” commonly cause life-threatening complications for which professional medical attention is required.

Continued: https://www.populationconnection.org/how-a-change-in-u-s-abortion-policy-threatens-lives-in-malawi/

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How a change in U.S. abortion policy reverberated around the globe

How a change in U.S. abortion policy reverberated around the globe
Health-care workers in Madagascar and dozens of other countries have faced new obstacles since Trump signed an order tying U.S. aid to antiabortion rules.

By Max Bearak and Carol Morello
Photo and video by Carolyn Van Houten
Oct. 10, 2018

BETSINGILO, Madagascar — Nana thought for a second, and then shook her head. Donald Trump? No, never heard of him.

Her humble, earthen home and field of cassava are about as far from Washington as it gets. She lives in Madagascar, an impoverished island hundreds of miles off the coast of Africa — and tiny Betsingilo is a week-long trip by bus from the country’s capital.

The distance has not stopped Trump’s foreign policy from affecting people’s lives here.

Continued: https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2018/world/how-a-change-in-us-abortion-policy-reverberated-around-the-globe/

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Melania Trump’s sunny message in Africa at odds with US policy

Melania Trump's sunny message in Africa at odds with US policy

By David McKenzie and Brent Swails, CNN
October 3, 2018

Johannesburg, South Africa (CNN)First lady Melania Trump's solo swing through Ghana, Malawi, Kenya and Egypt should come as no surprise.
It has become something of a tradition for US first ladies.

In the 1990s, Hillary Clinton met with Nelson Mandela and toured his jail cell on Robben Island. Laura Bush traveled to Africa to visit HIV/AIDS programs. Michelle Obama, who focused more on domestic issues, still made it out to South Africa and Botswana on a solo tour.

Continued: https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/03/africa/flotus-africa-trip-intl/index.html

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Euromapping 2018 report – Global funding for family planning at risk from US withdrawal

Euromapping 2018 report – Global funding for family planning at risk from US withdrawal

Eoghan Walsh
29th August 2018
Development Cooperation, Press Releases, Sexual and Reproductive Health

Euromapping 2018Euromapping 2018 report highlights the need for other global donors – the European Union and EU Member States – to increase their contributions to protect health of women and girls around the world.

Brussels, August 29, 2018: The latest Euromapping 2018 report on global funding for family planning (FP) and reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health (RMNCH) highlights the US as the world’s leading donor in this field, but that data does not accurately reflect the withdrawal from this field by the Trump presidency. The reinstatement of the Mexico City Policy, better known as the Global Gag Rule, in 2017 will accelerate a decline in US funding in the coming years. It is the responsibility of other global donors in Europe and the rest of the world to step up and make sure that life-saving funding for family planning, contraception and maternal health does not disappear.

Continued: http://www.dsw.org/en/2018/08/euromapping-2018-family-planning-trump-global-gag-rule/

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