‘The doctors in Northern Ireland knew my baby would die. But I was refused an abortion’
One grieving woman tells of the suffering the current ban caused her
Sun 6 Oct 2019
Denise Phelan was denied an abortion three years ago in circumstances so extreme she still finds it harrowing to speak about it, and does so only because she is determined that no other woman should be forced to go through a similar experience.
“My anger wakes me up at night. It’s a deep, almost in-the-bone anger,” she says. She and her husband, Richard Gosnold, are also still grieving for the loss of their baby, Alenja. Their trauma has been prolonged and they feel it is too late now to try for another pregnancy.
Latin America's New Anti-Abortion Battle Line: Fetus Adoption Over Abortion
These innovative but controversial initiatives could serve as a model for abortion battles elsewhere.
By Deborah Bonello
Sept 29 2019
There is no word in Spanish for miscarriage. The term aborto espontaneo, which translates to spontaneous abortion, is the language used when pregnancy in Latin America ends suddenly. But as popular opinion in the region — home to some of the world’s most draconian legislation against abortion — slowly moves away from rigid opposition, anti-abortion actors are changing their language and tactics to fight back.
For decades, anti-abortion campaigns in Latin America have been built around principles outlined in the Bible, and values of morality and decency, says Fernanda Doz Costa, Amnesty International’s deputy director for the Americas. Now, a new generation of activists opposed to abortion has adopted a rights-based approach arguing in favor of both the mother’s and the child’s rights, or that abortion can be avoided in many cases without the mother having to raise the child.
Mexican Activists Take to Streets to Demand Safe, Legal Abortions
September 29, 2019
MEXICO CITY - Mexican activists took to the streets in large cities Saturday to demand safe and legal abortions, many wearing green bandanas that have become a symbol with the abortion rights movement in Latin America.
The protests on International Safe Abortion Day come after the Mexican state of Oaxaca on Wednesday approved a bill to legalize abortion, making it only the second region after Mexico City to permit the procedure.
Explained: Abortion Rights in Mexico and Latin America
Here are some key facts and figures for specific countries
By Amy Guthrie
Published Sep 29, 2019
Mexican women on Saturday marched for abortion rights, highlighting increased efforts across Latin America to lift some of the world's most restrictive abortion laws.
Efforts to legalize abortion have emerged in the region as some societies become more liberal and the Roman Catholic Church loses sway amid clerical sex abuse cases. Mexico City, along with Cuba and Uruguay, are the only places in the region where women can undergo abortions during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy regardless of the circumstances.
It’s time for men, church to defend women against unsafe abortions
Mugove G Madziyire
September 28, 2019
In 1984, when I was in primary school, Rosemary (not her name), a fellow classmate, passed away. The news shocked the whole class. At our age, death didn’t seem possible. A few days later, the headmaster spoke to us at the school assembly. He said Rosemary had “played” inappropriately with boys and become pregnant. And she died because she had attempted to abort the pregnancy. It was a big relief to us to realise that she, in fact, “deserved to die”. How could she do that?
We never thought about the man who had caused the pregnancy, why she became pregnant, and why she attempted an abortion. Today, 35 years later, as a specialist gynaecologist and a man, it is clear to me that men must ask those tough questions if we are to stop unnecessary deaths from illegal and dangerous abortions.
A Miscarrying Woman Nearly Died After a Catholic Hospital Sent Her Home Three Times
Washington lawmakers have enacted some of the country’s most progressive policies to protect reproductive health care. But these measures have run up against the state’s high concentration of religious facilities.
Sep 25, 2019
There’s a single hospital in Bellingham, a picturesque coastal city 20 miles from the Canadian border in Washington. So when a Bellingham mental health counselor named Alison started bleeding three months into her pregnancy in 2013, PeaceHealth St. Joseph Medical Center was her only option.
Alison had first gone to her OB-GYN’s private practice, where her doctor, C. Shayne Mora, diagnosed her with a possible case of placenta previa, a serious condition where the placenta blocks the cervix. He told her to go to the hospital if she started bleeding again. When that happened the next day, Alison went to the St. Joseph emergency room. After an ultrasound showed the fetus was viable, the hospital discharged her. Providers recorded a clinical impression of “threatened abortion,” meaning Alison was at risk of miscarrying. They told her to return if she bled more heavily or ran a fever.
Meet Argentina's Self-Styled Anti-Abortion Feminist
Why you should care: Because she is fueling the abortion debate with campaigns for contraception and sex ed.
By Amy Booth
Sept 24 2019
Argentine Deputy Carla Pitiot believes in leveling the playing field for women. She has fought workplace harassment and the gender pay gap, campaigned for shared parental leave and criticized the Catholic Church for its stance on contraception. But in one respect she stands out from the women’s rights crowd: She is staunchly opposed to abortion.
The abortion debate has divided Argentina as it could become the biggest country in Latin America to broadly legalize abortion. Currently, abortion is legal only when there is a risk to the life or health of the mother or in cases of rape. A bill last year to allow abortion up to 14 weeks for any reason passed the lower House but was voted down in the Senate. (The bill encompassed anybody who could become pregnant, to include trans and nonbinary people.) A bill this year was put on ice ahead of October’s national elections — but advocates believe it’s likely to pass under the next president.
Poland has some of the strictest abortion laws. This German NGO has a solution
Group members offer up their couches, help with translating and accompany the women to hospital, writes Dylan Brethour
Sep 8, 2019
Across the globe, the rise of right-wing parties has stirred up the fight over abortion.
In Poland, which has some of the most restrictive laws in Europe, women can only get an abortion in cases of rape or incest, when the pregnancy poses a serious threat to a woman’s health, or when there is a severe foetal abnormality.
The women of Argentina are divided over abortion
September 2, 2019
Luciana Angueira, a social worker in Villa Fiorito, a poor neighborhood outside of central Buenos Aires, Argentina, says many of the women she sees are looking to end their pregnancies, but don't want their husbands to know.
"That would mean they are being unfaithful — the men are very possessive," she said. "We have some patients who don't believe in abortion, but they still come here looking for pills because they don't want more children."
When religious ideology drives abortion policy, poor women suffer the consequences
by Gretchen E. Ely, The Conversation
Sept 2, 2019
In Northern Ireland, Catholics and Protestants are frequently segregated, with some neighborhoods divided by barbed wire fences, reflecting deep historical conflicts between the faiths.
Ninety percent of Northern Ireland's 1.87 million people are Christian, with Protestants, once the solid majority there, now slightly outnumbering Catholics. But members of these faiths remain divided decades after a 1997 peace agreement meant to end sectarian violence in the region.