USA – Women in tech are mobilizing to improve access to abortion providers

Women in tech are mobilizing to improve access to abortion providers
In the face of a U.S. administration increasingly hostile to a woman’s right to choose, a number of organizations are finding new and clever ways to deliver access.

By Rina Raphael
Nov 1, 2018

In 2016, the National Network of Abortion Funds (NNAF), a network of 70 organizations supporting access to abortion, was putting together its annual fundraising Bowl-a-Thon, a coordinated nationwide series of games that featured a night full of drinks, gutter balls, and striped shirts—all in the name of reproductive rights. Women across the country gathered together to play and pick pun-heavy team names like Kiss Our Uter-Ass, Bowl V. Wade, and The Fempire Strikes Back.

But in the weeks leading up the fundraising event, the Bowl-a-Thon suffered a devastating setback: It was hacked. Not by bored teenagers, North Korean hackers, or the Russians—but by pro-life activists.

Continued: https://www.fastcompany.com/90254094/how-tech-is-helping-abortion-providers-overcome-barriers-to-access

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USA – The future of DIY abortions is the internet, not a back-alley doctor

The future of DIY abortions is the internet, not a back-alley doctor
No need for a clinic at all

by Lux Alptraum
Sep 22, 2018

For many people, the phrase “illegal abortion” calls to mind images of back alley clinics, medical providers with questionable credentials, and, of course, the dreaded coat hanger — an object so evocative it’s often been used as a protest symbol. But those images are outdated, belonging to a pre-Roe era. These days, the real action in abortion is now online, as a group of reproductive rights activists use the internet to spread the word about how to use abortion pills. They hope to give pregnant people living in places where abortion is nearly inaccessible, or outright illegal, access to safe and effective ways to take charge of their own fertility.

Thanks to the introduction of abortion pills mifepristone and misoprostol — which, in combination, effectively induce abortion 95 percent to 98 percent of the time — it’s become possible to terminate an unwanted pregnancy without an invasive medical procedure. More to the point, it’s possible for women to take these pills to induce an abortion on their own, without the assistance of a doctor. Those pills can be bought online — so for many people, it’s possible to avoid the clinic entirely.

Continued: https://www.theverge.com/2018/9/22/17807550/diy-abortion-sass-pills-plan-c-repro-action-safe2choose-mifeprostone-misoprostol-online

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USA – Self-Managed Abortion Care Becomes Urgent as Threats to Roe v. Wade Mount

Self-Managed Abortion Care Becomes Urgent as Threats to Roe v. Wade Mount

by Katie Klabusich, Truthout
Published August 19, 2018

When President Trump took office just over a year and a half ago, activists could only make educated guesses about whether his promised onslaught against reproductive health care would truly come to pass. The current picture is worse than expected due to attacks from rogue agency heads throughout the Trump-Pence administration who are collaborating to deny access to care to people across the country.

These agency heads include Betsy Devos at the Department of Education, who is working in tandem with the new division of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Civil Rights to reduce access to contraception; Scott Lloyd, who has directed the Office of Refugee Resettlement to deny abortion care to immigrant minors; and Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who has announced a “religious liberty task force” to shore up already existing “conscience clauses” allowing employees to refuse care.

Continued: https://truthout.org/articles/self-managed-abortion-care-becomes-urgent-as-threats-to-roe-v-wade-mount/

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USA – Why Women Are Sharing Their Abortion Stories

Why Women Are Sharing Their Abortion Stories
Even though abortion is technically legal, it can still come with shame, stigma, and fear.

By Katha Pollitt
Aug 3, 2018

Vats of ink have been spilled trying to figure out whether the coming right-wing majority on the Supreme Court will overturn Roe v. Wade. The truth is, we just don’t know; it will all come down to what’s in the hearts and minds of five anti-abortion, very conservative men. If I were one of them, I would definitely opt for keeping Roe and letting it dangle in the wind. Upending the precedent could awaken the majority of Americans who want to keep abortion legal. Right now a lot of pro-choicers still don’t pay attention to restrictions on abortion, no matter how stringent they are, as long as the procedure is technically lawful and available to them personally.

Continued: https://www.thenation.com/article/why-women-are-sharing-their-abortion-stories/

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Abortion-rights activists in U.S. brace for new wave of restrictions

Abortion-rights activists in U.S. brace for new wave of restrictions
David Crary
NEW YORK, The Associated Press
August 2, 2018

Abortion-rights advocates are intensifying efforts to make it easier for women to get abortions amid a new wave of state-level bans and restrictions expected to occur under a reconfigured U.S. Supreme Court.

The efforts include boosting financial aid for women needing to travel long distances to get an abortion, and raising awareness about the option of do-it-yourself abortions.

Continued: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/world/article-abortion-rights-activists-in-us-brace-for-new-wave-of-restrictions/

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USA – Why Abortion Access Organizations Are Suing Anti-Choice Internet Trolls

Why Abortion Access Organizations Are Suing Anti-Choice Internet Trolls

Melanie Ehrenkranz
May 9, 2018

For grassroots pro-choice organizations, visibility is a double-edged sword. This was especially clear during the National Abortion Access Bowl-a-Thon cyberattack two years ago. For the National Network of Abortion Funds (NNAF), which led the event, more visibility meant the potential to raise more money to help those in need of abortion access. It also made them a target of vitriolic anti-choice trolls.

During the 2016 Bowl-a-Thon, trolls pledged $66 billion in fraudulent donations, took down the fundraiser website with a DDoS attack, and created fake donor pages to phish for supporters’ personal information. Fake fundraising accounts included names like “qwerty,” “adolph hitler,” and “holifuk.” Forensics reports also indicate that ahead of the cyberattack, hackers placed malicious code on the fundraising website which allowed them to gather donors’ personal information and credit card details from a payment page, according to a complaint filed by NNAF.

continued: https://gizmodo.com/why-abortion-access-organizations-are-suing-anti-choice-1825514431

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USA: The Disturbing Rise of Cyberattacks Against Abortion Clinics

The Disturbing Rise of Cyberattacks Against Abortion Clinics
Rebecca Grant
Oct 5, 2017

Fatimah Gifford was nervous the day she was scheduled to testify in front of Texas’ Health and Human Services committee. Gifford is the VP of Communications for Whole Woman’s Health, which operates five reproductive healthcare clinics across Texas. This wasn’t her first time testifying before the state legislature, but it was her first time testifying about abortion.

“I entered into this with eyes wide open, and knowing that I was more than likely going to be devoured up in there,” she says.

Continued: https://www.wired.com/story/cyberattacks-against-abortion-clinics/

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Distance that U.S. patients travel for care illustrates growing inaccessibility of abortion

Distance that U.S. patients travel for care illustrates growing inaccessibility of abortion
June 9, 2017 by Bert Gambini

Abortion fund recipients who have to travel out of state for an abortion travel roughly 10 times farther for their procedures than patients able to get care in their homes states.

On average, abortion fund recipients who receive funds from advocacy organizations to help pay for abortion costs travel close to 172 miles from their homes to a health care provider for the procedures, a distance that has nearly doubled over a recent period that parallels the unprecedented policy-based restrictions that began after the 2010 midterm elections, according to Gretchen Ely, an associate professor in the University at Buffalo School of Social Work.

Continued at source: MedicalXpress: https://medicalxpress.com/news/2017-06-distance-patients-inaccessibility-abortion.html

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Women on Waves Boat Detained in Guatemala

BREAKING: Women on Waves Boat Detained in Guatemala

Media Contact: Leticia Zenevich, leticia@womenonweb.org

National Network of Abortion Funds, media@abortionfunds.org

February 25, 2017 — Women on Waves, a member of the National Network of Abortion Funds, works to provide contraceptives, information, training, workshops, and safe and legal abortion services outside territorial waters in countries where abortion is illegal. In international waters (12 miles off the coast of a country) any laws banning abortion do not apply. Women on Waves provides these vital reproductive health services using a boat while working in close cooperation with local organizations to respond to urgent medical need and draw public attention to their campaign.

Since February 23rd, a Women on Waves boat offering safe abortions at the harbour Marina Pez Vela outside of Guatemala, has been detained in port. Rebecca Gomperts, Director of Women on Waves, and Quetzali Cerezo, Director of AME Guatemala, stayed on the ship today after rejecting an unlawful order revoking the licenses of the ship. They explained that the letter delivered by the Guatemalan army “did not mention the possibilities to appeal and it was not an official court order. When we mentioned this and refused to sign for the receipt, they withdrew the letter. So the licenses are all still valid.” Women in Guatemala City subsequently began protesting in front of the Ministry of Defense, requesting that the Women on Waves boat remain in Guatemala to provide access to safe abortion.

Continued at source: National Network of Abortion Funds: https://abortionfunds.org/breaking-women-on-waves-2017/

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