England Leads Way in UK after U-Turn on COVID-19 Abortion Access
Rest of UK, Europe Should Follow
March 31, 2020
Hillary Margolis, Senior Researcher, Women's Rights Division
The UK’s Department of Health and Social Care has confirmed it will allow women in England temporarily to manage medical abortions at home in light of the lockdown imposed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Health authorities in Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales – and governments across Europe – should swiftly follow suit.
The welcome decision follows outrage and confusion last week after the government announced the change only to reverse it hours later.
AN INTERNATIONAL CALL TO ACTION
TO: Women, Health Systems, Governments, UN Human Rights Bodies and WHO
27 March 2020
by International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion
We Need a Rational Policy for Safe Abortion in Every Country NOW!
Every day, in every country of the world, women have abortions. Each year, globally, there are 56 million abortions, or an average of 154,000 abortions every single day. Some 45% of those abortions are still unsafe in spite of 100 years of national and international campaigns for safe, legal abortions.
In almost every country, even where abortions are safe, access to abortion is restricted by antediluvian, punitive and medically unnecessary laws and regulations. The only way many women manage to have abortions at all is if they or an abortion care provider breaks the law in some minor or major way – 25 million times each year if we count only the unsafe abortions. The serious effect of the COVID-19 virus on all our lives has put this absurdity into sharp relief.
Abortion Providers Are Acting as Travel Agents. That’s Wrong.
The spread of COVID-19 will only further complicate the efforts to get abortion patients to clinics safely and efficiently.
Mar 25, 2020
David S. Cohen & Carole Joffe
We will not find out for a few months how the recently argued U.S. Supreme Court case, June Medical v. Russo, will be decided. But lurking behind the Court’s first abortion case since President Donald Trump appointed two anti-abortion justices is an underappreciated aspect of abortion care in the United States: the extent to which abortion providers serve as de facto travel agents for patients.
If the Supreme Court rules against abortion rights in this case, an already challenging situation will become much worse. But even before the Court rules, the COVID-19 crisis is already complicating abortion care and putting more pressure on providers to troubleshoot travel issues.
Abortion activists in Poland fret as coronavirus curbs access
Alicja Ptak, Reuters
March 21, 2020
WARSAW — Natalia Broniarczyk, an activist with a charity that assists Polish women who want to terminate pregnancies, says its hot line began ringing non-stop after the government announced border closures to stem the coronavirus outbreak last week.
Many callers were worried about their shipments of abortion pills, which are illegal in Poland, and others feared they would not be able to reach clinics abroad in time to have the procedure, which is unavailable in Poland in most cases.
Your Questions About Reproductive Health During the COVID-19 Pandemic, Answered
"The effect [of the COVID-19 outbreak] on people accessing abortion care is considerable, especially in those states that have limited access."
Mar 17, 2020
With some U.S. cities on lockdown and businesses and schools shutting their doors, the COVID-19 virus is dramatically changing everyday life for people across the country, including those seeking reproductive health services.
In the face of potential quarantining, monthslong lockdowns, and social distancing, there’s no question that people will have anxiety over potential interruptions to their abortion care and other reproductive health care.
Will Argentina legalize abortion?
EDITOR: Ellen Nemitz, Curitiba
March 17th, 2020
Green and blue: Argentina is divided between the two colors representing “in favor” and “against" abortion, respectively. Alberto Fernandez, president of Argentina, can now be the support the “green scarf” movement needs. On March 1st, during the oficial opening of legislative activities for 2020, Fernandez affirmed he would write and send himself, within 10 days, a bill to Congress to legalize — and not just decriminalize — the pregnancy interruption in first steps.
Due to the Coronavirus outbreak, though, the legislative agenda is being rescheduled and the submission of the project was postponed, so details are still not known. Nonetheless, this will certainly not be the end of the new attempt to legalize abortion in Argentina — the last one was in 2018, but, although the Congress passed the bill, the Senate disapproved it under Mauricio Macri’s administration, who declared himself “in favor of life".
Kenya split over campaign to give women the right to safe abortions
MP Esther Passaris says lives are being put at risk in a country where 40% of pregnancies are unplanned
Ginger Hervey in Nairobi
Tue 17 Mar 2020
The pills arrived with no instructions. Delivered on a Sunday to Joy’s home in Kayole, an informal settlement in Kenya’s capital Nairobi, by someone she didn’t know.
She had ordered them because she was pregnant, and didn’t want to be. At 19, she said, she couldn’t support a baby, and the father had stopped answering his phone after she told him. Desperate, she had asked an older friend, who said she knew someone who could help.
3 Abortion Providers On Tailoring Their Services To Trans Patients
By Jo Yurcaba
March 13, 2020
Abortion care is known as a "women's issue." The pro-choice movement uses slogans like "her body, her choice," and abortion clinics often have "women" in their names. Gendered language, however — paired with the widespread discrimination transgender people face in health care — means many trans and non-binary people avoid seeking care altogether.
No statistics are available on how many trans people receive abortions annually, but the number is thought to be relatively small. A 2018 study of 450 trans men and gender non-conforming individuals found that 6% experienced unplanned pregnancies. Of that group, 32% opted to terminate them.
I’m a Proud Abortion Provider. Here’s Why.
I feel that every day is National Day of Appreciation for Abortion Providers because of the immense appreciation I receive from my patients, day in and day out.
Mar 10, 2020
Every day, I walk through the doors of the Planned Parenthood health center where I work with a smile, often singing along to a song playing on my headphones. Many find this surprising considering there are usually anti-abortion protesters outside the health center taunting me and my patients or trying to convince me to “find a better job.”
They fail to realize I’m proud to be an abortion provider who puts patients first.
My Abortion Before Roe v. Wade
March 8, 2020
Roe v. Wade is in peril. New restrictions on abortion exist in a dozen states. Providers are threatened with jail. And this week, the Supreme Court heard yet another attack on abortion rights with the Louisiana case June Medical Services v. Gee. According to the Center for Reproductive Rights, the ruling may leave the state’s 1 million women of reproductive age with only one legal abortion provider. And many other states stand ready to follow suit. This rush into the past has flung me back to a terrifying time in my own life half a century ago, one I never expected women today would have to face.
In late December 1965, I was 19 and in Brooklyn, home from college for the holiday break. I was also pregnant. I knew exactly how pregnant I was because I’d spent Thanksgiving with my boyfriend, Mark, who was in graduate school in Indiana.