Criminalizing the right to health: The shared struggle of the HIV and safe abortion movements

Criminalizing the right to health: The shared struggle of the HIV and safe abortion movements
Both HIV and unsafe abortion endanger life and health and have a disproportionate impact on people living in developing countries

by Reuters
Thursday, 11 October 2018
By Edwin Cameron and Anand Grover

This month, India’s Supreme Court struck down Section 377 - a colonial-era law that banned same-sex activity and led to the systemic discrimination and persecution of LGBTQ Indians. This was a huge victory for India and - as two lawyers who have spent decades fighting for the rights of LGBTQ individuals - a very personal one.

Yet, while we celebrate this incredible achievement, we must remember that criminalization remains a potent threat for the health and lives of many people around the world. And those that often bear the largest burden are people living with HIV and AIDS and women and girls seeking abortion services.

Continued: http://news.trust.org//item/20181011090405-2b51v/

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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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‘I was given photos of the foetus’: abortion stigma lingers in pioneering Uruguay

'I was given photos of the foetus': abortion stigma lingers in pioneering Uruguay
The country has much to celebrate as Latin America’s most progressive on reproductive rights, but the process of getting a termination can still be long and stressful

Elizabeth Sulis Kim in Montevideo and Salto
Wed 10 Oct 2018

Juana Fernandez* was a university student and in the first few months of a new relationship when she discovered she was pregnant.

She was not ready to become a mother in her early 20s, so Fernandez, from Montevideo, decided to have an abortion. At that time, abortion was illegal in Uruguay so she was forced to undergo a clandestine termination. It was a stressful time.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2018/oct/10/uruguay-pioneering-abortion-laws-changed-lives-yet-stigma-lingers

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Victoria legalised abortion 10 years ago – what will it take in NSW and Queensland?

Victoria legalised abortion 10 years ago – what will it take in NSW and Queensland?
A decade on, Victoria still doesn’t have enough publicly provided, accessible abortion services

Kathleen Maltzahn
Tue 9 Oct 2018

It took more than 40 years of feminist activism, three days and nights of parliamentary debate and hours-long speeches by religious right MPs railing against decriminalisation for abortion in Victoria to be taken out of the crimes act. Ten years on, this is still a powerful victory. Victoria is one of only three Australian jurisdictions where abortion is legal, despite strong community support. Given recent failures to decriminalise in Queensland and New South Wales, Victoria’s success is a reminder that change is possible.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/commentisfree/2018/oct/09/victoria-legalised-abortion-10-years-ago-what-will-it-take-in-nsw-and-queensland

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Africa – From Counting To Ensuring Everyone Counts

From Counting To Ensuring Everyone Counts

Dailyguide Africa
October 6, 2018
Dereje Wordofa with Samira Bawumia

At first glance, one may think the Ussher Fort Polyclinic only serves the purpose of a health facility for the people of Jamestown; providing basic healthcare needs for residents in its catchment areas.

But the health facility does a little more than just providing healthcare services.

The facility houses a skills training centre where teenage mothers and girls who have dropped out of school acquire dressmaking skills in a two-year programme being sponsored by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).

Continued: http://dailyguideafrica.com/from-counting-to-ensuring-everyone-counts/

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USA – Hundreds of Lawmakers and Organizations Demand State Dept. Stop Excluding Women’s Rights From Human Rights Reports

Hundreds of Lawmakers and Organizations Demand State Dept. Stop Excluding Women's Rights From Human Rights Reports
Nearly 100 civil society organizations, 129 members of Congress sent letters to Secretary of State Pompeo this week

by Andrea Germanos, staff writer, Common Dreams
Friday, October 05, 2018

Trump's State Department this week is facing backlash and calls to reverse course on its decision to omit from its annual Country Reports on Human Rights Practices the entire reproductive rights section and to weaken its reporting on gender-based violence—a decision critics said amounted to showing that women and girls' "rights don't matter" to the current administration.

With their eyes on preventing the upcoming 2018 reports from containing the same "highly problematic" omissions as the 2017 ones, nearly 100 civil society organizations (pdf) and 129 members of Congress (pdf) sent letters to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo demanding the inclusion of information on denials of these fundamental human rights, including lack of access to contraception, unsafe abortion, and violence in accessing healthcare services.

Continued: https://www.commondreams.org/news/2018/10/05/hundreds-lawmakers-and-organizations-demand-state-dept-stop-excluding-womens-rights

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Ghana – ‘Stigmatisation causes women to seek unsafe abortion services’

‘Stigmatisation causes women to seek unsafe abortion services’

Date: Oct 04 , 2018
BY: Salomey Appiah-Adjei

Women with unwanted pregnancy who intend to access safe abortion services in Ghana suffer stigmatization and that deters them from seeking such services. They, therefore, resort to unsafe abortion, which can lead to complications such as severe infections, infertility and even death.

The Executive Director of Planned Parenthood Association of Ghana (PPAG), Mrs Abena Adubea Amoah Acheampong, who made the observation, however, pointed out that the law allowed for safe abortion by a registered professional at a registered facility if the pregnancy had the tendency to affect the woman physically, psychologically or financially.

Continued: https://www.graphic.com.gh/news/health/stigmatisation-causes-women-to-seek-unsafe-abortion-services.html

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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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USA – Bedsider Created an Extremely Easy Way to Help Women Find Abortion Providers

Exclusive: Bedsider Created an Extremely Easy Way to Help Women Find Abortion Providers
It's the most comprehensive and detailed abortion provider database so far.

By Hannah Smothers
Oct 3, 2018

Bedsider, a birth control support network from Power to Decide, announced Wednesday morning the launch of a new feature that makes it extremely easy for people to locate nearby abortion providers, and access care they need.

You might know Bedsider as an online resource for all things birth control: The site has info on all the contraceptive methods you can feasibly get, including how effective each one is with typical and perfect use, and which method is best for who. For a few years, part of Bedsider's mission in making contraceptive knowledge and access as easy as possible has included a local clinic finder.

Continued: https://www.cosmopolitan.com/sex-love/a23574724/bedsider-power-to-decide-abortion-clinic-finder-exclusive/

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New Zealand – Family Planning welcomes landmark Human Rights Council resolution

Family Planning welcomes landmark Human Rights Council resolution

Contributer: Fuseworks Media Fuseworks Media
Wednesday, 3 October, 2018

Family Planning New Zealand is thrilled with a landmark resolution which recognises the need for comprehensive sexuality education, and accessible sexual healthcare and services, including safe abortion.

The resolution adopted by the Human Rights Council was led by a number of countries including New Zealand and is supported across the board by international family planning organisations.

Continued: http://www.voxy.co.nz/health/5/322450

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