The Global Gag Rule Is Harming Women Around The World

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The Global Gag Rule Is Harming Women Around The World — EXCLUSIVE

By Nancy Northup & Anu Kumar
Feb 19, 2018

Jan. 23 marks one year since President Donald Trump reinstated and expanded the Mexico City Policy, which bans overseas organizations that receive U.S. funding from using their own money to provide abortion information, referrals, or to advocate for law reform. The policy, also known as the Global Gag Rule, not only harms women and girls around the world, it disproportionately impacts countries home to mainly people of color. It embodies the “America First” ideological imperialism and reliance on strong-arm coercion that have shaped and defined this administration’s first year.

Every Republican president since Ronald Reagan has implemented the gag rule, using foreign policy to bully countries on abortion for decades. Since 1973, global health organizations have been working under the Helms Amendment, an egregious policy that bans any U.S. foreign aid funds from being used for abortion services. This policy remains in effect, and the gag rule bolsters it. Despite the Helms Amendment, in recent years the global community has made progress in expanding access to reproductive health care, particularly safe abortion.

Continued: https://www.elitedaily.com/p/the-global-gag-rule-is-harming-women-around-the-world-exclusive-8245633

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El Salvador Frees Woman Imprisoned Under Anti-Abortion Laws

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El Salvador Frees Woman Imprisoned Under Anti-Abortion Laws

Feb. 15, 2018
Reuters

SAN SALVADOR (Reuters) - An El Salvadoran woman, serving a 30-year prison term for allegedly aborting her child, was freed on Thursday after the country's Supreme Court reduced her sentence.

Since 1997, El Salvador has had one of the world's most severe laws against women who have had abortions or those who are suspected of assisting others with abortions.

Prosecutors maintain that Teodora Vasquez, a 34-year-old chef, strangled her baby after it was born in 2007. Her lawyers said she had health complications and had suffered a stillbirth.

Continued: https://www.usnews.com/news/world/articles/2018-02-15/el-salvador-frees-woman-imprisoned-under-anti-abortion-laws

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USA: Google search results for abortion services promote anti-abortion centers

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Google search results for abortion services promote anti-abortion centers
When users seek facilities for the procedure, Google Maps often presents ‘crisis pregnancy centers’ that discourage abortions

Sam Levin in San Francisco
Tue 13 Feb 2018

Google searches for abortion services direct users to anti-abortion centers across the US, according to a new report that has sparked concerns from reproductive rights’ groups.

In response to the question “Where can I get an abortion near me?”, Google Maps frequently suggests “crisis pregnancy centers”, which are often non-medical facilities that provide counseling meant to discourage women from having abortions.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/feb/13/abortions-near-me-google-search-results-anti-pro-life-groups-promote

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US servicewomen’s reproductive health coverage trails global counterparts, pro-abortion rights group study says

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US servicewomen’s reproductive health coverage trails global counterparts, pro-abortion rights group study says

By WYATT OLSON | STARS AND STRIPES
Published: February 13, 2018

American servicewomen receive “below average” reproductive health coverage compared to their counterparts serving in the armed forces of many other countries, according to a study released Tuesday by a pro-abortion rights group.

In particular, access to abortions by U.S. women in uniform is far more limited compared to those who serve in almost two dozen countries that researchers rated “exceptional,” from Canada and the United Kingdom to Nepal, Turkey and South Africa. The study was published by Ibis Reproductive Health, a nonprofit research organization whose website says it promotes increasing access to safe abortion as well as “expanding contraceptive access and choices” and “comprehensive sexual and reproductive health services.”

continued: https://www.stripes.com/news/us-servicewomen-s-reproductive-health-coverage-trails-global-counterparts-pro-abortion-rights-group-study-says-1.511449

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Australia: New laws needed to protect abortion clinic workers

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New laws needed to protect abortion clinic workers

Michelle Thompson
February 12 2018

Imagine going to work and being told by strangers you are going to hell. You have to push past people who tell you what you do is wrong, that you should be ashamed and that you’re doing the devil’s work. Your vehicle is regularly splashed by "holy water" that mysteriously blisters the paint on your car, and you have graphic images shoved in your face as you enter your workplace.

This is the reality for many Australian healthcare workers each day who provide abortion care to thousands of patients.

Continued: http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/laws-to-protect-abortion-clinic-workers-20180212-p4z00u.html

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USA: Doctors: You Can Help Make Self-Managed Abortions Safer

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Doctors: You Can Help Make Self-Managed Abortions Safer

Monday, February 12, 2018
By Jamila Perritt and Jill E. Adams
Truthout | Op-Ed

Forty-five years ago, doctors were at the forefront of efforts to decriminalize abortion, which culminated in the landmark Supreme Court ruling of Roe v. Wade. And today, doctors are again in the vanguard speaking out against abortion criminalization of a more recent vintage: that of the pregnant woman herself.

While people have been ending their own pregnancies throughout the world since the dawn of time, it is only recently that social scientists have begun studying the prevalence of this practice in the United States. Evidence shows that people are ending pregnancies outside of clinical settings using abortion pills, herbs and other methods for a variety of reasons. And the need for options outside of clinics is expected to continue -- if not grow -- in the coming years as anti-abortion zealots in public office make good on their campaign promises to enact and enforce unnecessary and onerous restrictions on clinical abortion care designed to make abortion even more scarce and unaffordable.

Continued: http://www.truth-out.org/opinion/item/43516-doctors-it-is-time-to-rise-up-and-rally-against-abortion-criminalization

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Ireland’s opposition leader wants to liberalise abortion law

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Ireland's opposition leader wants to liberalise abortion law
Micheál Martin stuns sections of Fianna Fáil party by changing his mind over the contentious issue

Henry McDonald Ireland correspondent
Sun 11 Feb 2018

Ireland’s opposition leader has revealed he changed his mind in favour of liberalising the Republic’s strict anti-abortion laws after meeting women forced to travel to Britain to end their pregnancies after learning they had no hope their babies would be born alive.

Micheál Martin has stunned conservative sections of his Fianna Fáil party by backing the repeal of the eighth amendment to the Irish Republic’s constitution, which prohibits abortion, in a nationwide referendum in May.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/feb/11/micheal-martin-ireland-opposition-leader-wants-to-liberalise-abortion-law

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International concerns about women’s rights backsliding in Poland

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International concerns about women’s rights backsliding in Poland
Feb 9, 2018

The worsening state of SRHR in Poland has brought multiple reactions from international human rights bodies. Please below find here the most crucial observations and recommendations.

Letter of the Commissioner for Human Rights of the Council of Europe

In a letter addressed to the Prime Minister of Poland, the Commissioner refers to recent developments affecting the independence of the judiciary; women’s access to sexual and reproductive rights; the deteriorating environment for NGOs active in the area of women’s rights and assistance to victims of domestic violence; and attacks against the independence and effectiveness of the Ombudsman.

Regarding women’s rights, the Commissioner regrets that new barriers are being created to hinder women’s access to comprehensive sexuality education, emergency contraception and abortion care. He urges the authorities to repeal any retrogressive laws and to reject any legislative or policy proposals which would weaken women’s sexual and reproductive health and rights. Here the main fragment related to SRHR:

Continued: http://en.federa.org.pl/international-concerns-about-womens-rights-backsliding-in-poland/

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USA: Health groups dispute Trump admin claims on abortion funding

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Health groups dispute Trump admin claims on abortion funding

By Nicole Gaouette
Fri February 9, 2018

Washington (CNN)The Trump administration said just four out of 733 organizations that have received US funding to deliver health services have turned down US grants rather than accept new rules that forbid the US providing aid to promote or perform abortions overseas.

Advocates said that claim drastically downplays the impact of the new rules, which they say will have "far-reaching and deadly" effects, limiting access to health care and HIV/AIDS treatment, among other services, and ultimately contributing to a rise in unsafe abortions.

Continued at source: https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/09/politics/trump-abortion-funding-health-groups/index.html

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‘Quacks are killing our women’: Nigeria’s abortion ban pushes women to drastic measures

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'Quacks are killing our women': Nigeria's abortion ban pushes women to drastic measures
By Declan Cooley

Posted Fri Feb 9, 2018

Blessing grew up in a dusty but bustling city in Nigeria's forgotten east, but while she was at school and in love with her boyfriend, she fell pregnant.

Somehow Blessing's mother, and the rest of her neighbourhood, found out she was pregnant and tried to insist she marry her boyfriend and keep the baby.

"Knowing full well I couldn't keep the child I took the risk myself to have an abortion on my own," she says.

Continued: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-02-10/nigerias-abortion-ban-pushes-women-to-drastic-measures/9416164

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