Why Roe v. Wade must be defended

The Lancet
May 14, 2022

“Abortion presents a profound moral issue on which Americans hold sharply conflicting views.” So begins a draft opinion by Associate Justice Samuel Alito, leaked from the US Supreme Court on May 2, 2022. If confirmed, this judgement would overrule the Court's past decisions to establish the right to access abortion. In Alito's words, “the authority to regulate abortion must be returned to the people and their elected representatives”. The Court's opinion rests on a strictly historical interpretation of the US Constitution: “The Constitution makes no reference to abortion, and no such right is implicitly protected by any constitutional provision.” His extraordinary text repeatedly equates abortion with murder.

Continued: https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(22)00870-4/fulltext

The US Supreme Court is wrong to disregard evidence on the harm of banning abortion

Fifty years of research shows that abortion access is crucial for health care and important for equality.

Nature, Editorial
05 May 2022

Abortion could soon cease to be legal across
the United States, according to a leaked draft of a US Supreme Court opinion,
published by news outlet Politico on 2 May. The court’s chief justice, John
Roberts, confirmed that the 98-page document is authentic, but not necessarily
final. If the draft does represent the court’s final position, it will fly in
the face of an overwhelming body of evidence from economists and reproductive-
and public-health researchers who point to the dire, immediate and unequal
impact this ruling will have on hundreds of thousands of people.

Continued: https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-022-01249-2

Hope for access to abortion in Kenya

A landmark court case could help activists seeking to revise Kenya's reproductive health policy.

Munyaradzi Makoni

WORLD REPORT| VOLUME 399, ISSUE 10334, P1456, APRIL 16, 2022.

The roll-out of a policy to promote and improve the reproductive health of
Kenyans has been suspended following protests from activists calling for
protection for patients who seek abortion services and the medical personnel
who provide them. On April 6, the Ministry of Health said that a new draft of
Kenya's Reproductive Health Policy 2022–32, which did not make any provision
for abortion, will be produced within 45 days, with civil society given an
opportunity to propose changes.

The decision follows a ruling on March 25 by Reuben Nyakundi, a High Court
judge in Malindi, who declared abortion-related arrests and prosecution
illegal, concluding that abortion care is a fundamental right under the
Constitution of Kenya, adding that protecting access to abortion affects vital
constitutional values, including dignity, autonomy, equality, and bodily
integrity. Although the Constitution allows it, Kenya's 1963 Penal Code still
criminalises all abortion care.

Continued: https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(22)00693-6/fulltext?dgcid=raven_jbs_etoc_email

USA – Fetal Viability, Long an Abortion Dividing Line, Faces a Supreme Court Test

On Wednesday, the justices will hear the most important abortion case in decades, one that could undermine or overturn Roe v. Wade.

By Adam Liptak
Nov. 28, 2021

WASHINGTON — In 1973, in Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court drew a line. The Constitution, it said, did not allow states to ban abortions before the fetus could survive outside the womb.

On Wednesday, when the court hears the most important abortion case in a generation, a central question will be whether the court’s conservative majority is prepared to erase that line. The case concerns a Mississippi law that bans most abortions after 15 weeks, long before fetal viability.

Continued: https://www.nytimes.com/2021/11/28/us/politics/supreme-court-mississippi-abortion-law.html

USA – To Protect Abortion Rights, Turn to Elections

Nov. 27, 2021

By The Editorial Board, New York Times

Will the Supreme Court overturn Roe v. Wade? As the justices prepare to hear oral arguments on Dec. 1 in the biggest abortion case in decades, that is the understandable question on everyone’s mind. It’s also a misleading one.

Yes, Roe could possibly meet its demise when the court decides Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which involves a Mississippi law that bans nearly all abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy. After all, outlawing abortion in America has been an animating object of the conservative movement for nearly half a century. But the Supreme Court never had a reliably anti-choice majority to pull it off. Now, largely thanks to the engineering of Senator Mitch McConnell, the court is stacked with a supermajority of conservative justices, several of whom surely must be tempted to finish the job they were put on the court to do.

Continued: https://www.nytimes.com/2021/11/27/opinion/roe-abortion-dobbs-scotus.html

The Guardian view on US abortion laws: freedoms hanging by a thread

By allowing the Texas law banning abortions after six weeks to stand, the supreme court has joined the attack

Mon 25 Oct 2021

The announcement by the US supreme court that Texas’s new law banning abortions after six weeks would be allowed to stand, until it hears the federal government’s case against it on 1 November, was a blow to anyone hoping that the court might block attempts to remove women’s constitutional right to abortion. The 1973 decision that established this right, Roe v Wade, is a landmark in the history of the court.

The challenge brought by the Biden administration aims to overturn the Texas law on grounds that the state has violated the court’s authority. By outsourcing enforcement of its abortion ban to private citizens, who since September have been allowed to sue anyone who helps a woman obtain an abortion, Texas legislators have sought “to evade the traditional mechanisms for judicial review”, the suit states.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/oct/25/the-guardian-view-on-us-abortion-laws-freedoms-hanging-by-a-thread

Abortion is essential healthcare and women’s health must be prioritized over politics

International Safe Abortion Day
28 September 2021
United Nations Human Rights, Office of the High Commissioner

On the International Safe Abortion Day, a group of UN experts* stress that abortion is essential health care and a human right. Denial of access to abortion services jeopardizes a person's physical and mental health and takes away their autonomy and agency. It unjustly denies them the freedom to live with dignity and on equal terms with other human beings while exposing them to various forms of violence and oppression.

Furthermore, and as Human Rights bodies have long acknowledged, the denial of abortion services through the criminalization of abortion or through barriers and delays in access to lawful services can in certain circumstances constitute cruel, degrading, and inhumane treatment, may amount to torture and could lead to arbitrary detention.

Continued: https://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=27549&LangID=E

Surgical abortions and the sad reality facing too many Tasmanian women

AUGUST 23 2021

Northern Tasmanian women are facing emotional and financial burdens when it comes to accessing surgical abortions - and in 2021 this simply isn't good enough.

It wasn't good enough this time last year when it was revealed that the cost shortfalls associated with the procedures were being absorbed by doctors, not the government.

Continued: https://www.manningrivertimes.com.au/story/7397127/surgical-abortions-and-the-sad-reality-facing-too-many-tasmanian-women/?cs=9397

Zambia – Addressing unsafe abortions

February 7, 2021

REVELATIONS by the Ministry of Health that Zambia records about 93,000 abortions annually is a worrisome scourge that needs redress if we are to save lives of women.

We have been told that figures include safe and unsafe abortions conducted among teenagers and women, some of them single while others are in marriages.

Continued: http://www.daily-mail.co.zm/addressing-unsafe-abortions/

Next Move On Abortion Trail

Published: Monday | January 11, 2021

When members of parliament (MPs) move to the front benches – as Juliet Cuthbert Flynn has, to become a member of the executive – they are expected, personal views notwithstanding, to toe the line of the party or government.

As of now, on this matter, Mrs Cuthbert Flynn is under no such constraint. For the Holness administration has not made a clear statement on its position on abortion. Neither, 10 months later, has it said how it intends to proceed on the recommendation by Parliament’s Human Resources and Social Development Committee that it holds a conscience vote on the matter.

Continued: http://jamaica-gleaner.com/article/commentary/20210111/editorial-next-move-abortion-trail