From ‘Conscientious Objection’ to ‘Conscientiously Committed’ – How OBGYNS can advocate for bodily autonomy in access to safe abortion

1 September 2021
FIGO - Advocating for Safe Abortion Project, Committee on Safe Abortion

In this FIGO Long Read, we provide a round-up of a recent roundtable discussion hosted by FIGO's Advocating for Safe Abortion Project (ASAP) and Committee on Safe Abortion. Together with partners, we explored the critical issue of conscientious objection and its impact on the availability of and access to legal and safe abortion services.

Quote by Laura Gil: Sadly ‘conscientious objection’ has become a widespread  barrier for many people to access the care that they need.   It is very common to hear that women or girls cannot get an abortion on time, got an unsafe abortion, or didn't get  one at all because of ‘conscientious objection‘ from  the available personnel.

Continued: https://www.figo.org/news/conscientious-objection-conscientiously-committed-how-obgyns-can-advocate-bodily-autonomy


The struggle to secure access to abortion in Argentina goes on

The Argentinian government must continue to dismantle barriers women face in accessing safe abortion.

Mariela Belski, Executive director of Amnesty International Argentina
9 Aug 2021

In recent months, Argentinians have had access to legal abortion for the first time. In December, Argentina became the fourth in Latin America to legalise abortion after the National Congress passed the Voluntary Termination of Pregnancy Law.

Securing this right for women and pregnant persons was a milestone achievement and the culmination of decades of struggle, setbacks and progress. Now, new challenges emerge: the effective implementation of the law across a vast and unequal territory and the legal battles filed by conservative groups in the nation’s courts.

Continued: https://www.aljazeera.com/opinions/2021/8/9/the-struggle-to-secure-access-to-abortion-in-argentina-goes-on


Lessons for health workers and advocates on how we can leverage Argentina’s ‘green wave’ to strengthen access to safe abortion

3 August 2021
FIGO Advocating for Safe Abortion Project

Riding on the green wave of civil society’s victory in Argentina to achieve the legalisation of abortion upon request up to 14 weeks of pregnancy, FIGO’s Advocating for Safe Abortion Project (ASAP) organised a live-broadcast discussion with OBGYNs and human rights advocates. The discussion unpacked the lessons of how the change in law was achieved and the impact of the law in Argentina and across Latin America. 

Argentina’s abortion law is a ground-breaking step in eliminating discrimination against women and girls, and in addressing the scale of unsafe abortion – a public health crisis in Argentina. It is estimated that 500,000 abortions occur every year in Argentina, representing 40% of all pregnancies. Annually, unsafe abortion accounts for 18% of pregnancy-related deaths and more than 50,000 preventable hospitalisations in Argentina.

Continued: https://www.figo.org/news/lessons-health-workers-and-advocates-how-we-can-leverage-argentinas-green-wave-strengthen


Women’s Rights Are Human Rights

This fight against women's oppression is not just a struggle for women, but for all of humanity.

Tuesday, April 06, 2021

by Alison Bodine, Common Dreams

March 8, 2021, International Women’s Day, is an important day to recognize the
challenges confronted and the great victories made by women around the world,
especially in the past year of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Over the last 12 months, in addition to the health challenges posed by Covid-19
itself, women have faced increasing rates of domestic violence, higher rates of
job loss, as well as a larger burden of the care of children and families
because of the pandemic. In countries like the U.S. and Canada, government
mismanagement of Covid-19 has amplified the health and economic crisis. Black,
Indigenous, and immigrant women and their communities have been
disproportionately impacted by the crisis.
Continued: https://www.commondreams.org/views/2021/04/06/womens-rights-are-human-rights


Abortion Is Now Legal in Argentina, but Opponents Are Making It Hard to Get

Anti-abortion activists are suing to block a new law allowing the procedure, and many doctors in conservative areas have declared themselves conscientious objectors.

By Daniel Politi, New York Times
March 7, 2021

BUENOS AIRES — For the first time in more
than a century, women in Argentina can legally get an abortion, but that
landmark shift in law may do them little good at hospitals like the one in
northern Jujuy Province where all but one obstetrician have a simple response:
No.

Abortion opponents are reeling after a
measure legalizing the procedure was signed into law in December, but they have
hardly given up. They have filed lawsuits arguing that the new law is
unconstitutional. And they have made sure doctors know that they can refuse to
terminate pregnancies, a message that is being embraced by many in rural areas.

Continued: https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/07/world/americas/argentina-abortion-opposition.html


Argentina: Can one country’s change of abortion law alter a continent?

By Katy Watson, BBC South America correspondent
March 4, 2021

When Argentina's Congress voted to legalise abortion up to the 14th week of pregnancy, Renata (not her real name) felt excited.

"How cool," the 20-year-old from
northern Brazil remembers thinking in late December. A student and supermarket
worker, Renata saw it as the start of something new in a region where abortion
is mostly illegal.

But she thought little more of it until a
week later, when she found out she was pregnant herself. Then, she says, her
world collapsed.

Continued: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-56098334


Activists hope Colombia follows Argentina’s lead on reproductive rights

February 28, 2021
Ana Fadul

Bogotá, Colombia – Abortion is a polarizing topic in Colombia, where it is against the law in most cases, but the legalization of the procedure in another South American nation has women’s rights activists here also hoping for a change.

In late December, Argentinian lawmakers voted 38 to 29 to make abortion legal until the 14th week of pregnancy. It was the first Latin American nation to fully legalize abortion, leading advocates to hope the decision will create a wave throughout the continent.

Continued: https://youthjournalism.org/activists-hope-colombia-follows-argentinas-lead-on-reproductive-rights/


Argentina’s Abortion Legislation Sparks Hope in Caribbean

February 14, 2021
By Kate Chappell (IPS)

HAVANA TIMES – It was a joyful, tearful celebration in the early morning hours of Dec. 30, 2020 for countless Argentinians when they heard the news: the senate had legalized terminations up to 14 weeks of pregnancy. Prior to this, activists have said that more than 3,000 women died of botched, illegal abortions since 1983. And across the Latin American and Caribbean (LAC) region, this renewed sense of optimism was compounded after President Joe Biden rescinded what is known as the “global gag rule,” which essentially denied funding to international non-profit organizations that provided abortion counseling or referrals.

Now, women and campaigners across LAC are hopeful that these developments will spur lawmakers to consider decriminalizing abortion in their countries, sparing women their lives, economic well-being, dignity and access to a range of options to make the best choice for their reproductive and overall health.

Continued: https://havanatimes.org/features/argentinas-abortion-legislation-sparks-hope-in-caribbean/


Argentina’s implementation of abortion law still murky

Legalization of early-term abortion celebrated by pro-choice activists and decried by pro-life activists

Bala Chambers
02.02.2021

On Dec. 30 last year, Argentina's Congress voted to legalize elective abortion in the first 14 weeks of gestation as the Senate backed the bill two years after rejecting a similar one.

Pro-choice activists welcomed the decision while pro-life sectors decried it.

Continued: https://www.aa.com.tr/en/americas/argentina-s-implementation-of-abortion-law-still-murky/2131149


Meet the Public Official Behind Argentina’s Landmark Abortion Ruling: Elizabeth Gómez Alcorta, Minister of Women

2/2/2021
by CORA FERNÁNDEZ ANDERSON

On Dec. 29, 2020, Argentina legalized abortion until the 14th week of pregnancy—becoming the third country in Latin America (after Cuba and Uruguay) to do so. This landmark victory was the result of many years of arduous activist work to raise awareness of the harm that comes with the criminalization of abortion.

In 2005, the women’s movement launched the Campaign for Safe, Free and Legal Abortion (La Campaña Nacional por el Derecho al Aborto Legal Seguro y Gratuito), which grew more powerful, reaching massive support across the country in the past three years. From there, activists drafted a bill and sought the support of legislators to advance abortion reform in Congress. In 2018, the campaign’s bill was discussed in Congress for the first time. It passed in the Lower Chamber but was rejected in the Senate by a vote of 38-31.

Continued: https://msmagazine.com/2021/02/02/argentina-abortion-ruling-feminist-latin-america-elizabeth-gomez-alcorta-minister-of-women-gender-diversity/