UK – Pills in the post: how Covid reopened the abortion wars

As some European countries rolled out ‘telemed’ abortion, others shut down access completely.

by Sarah Hurtes and Daniel Boffey
Wed 21 Apr 2021

Kay, 34, realised her period was late a month into Britain’s lockdown. The coronavirus death count was spiralling across the country. Covid-19 was putting the NHS under unprecedented strain and Boris Johnson had given the British people what he described as “a very simple instruction” in an address to the nation from Downing Street: “You must stay at home.”

A worrying, unsettling time, and Kay, a mother of a six-year-old girl, needed to get hold of a pregnancy test kit. She went online and, two days later, took delivery of the test, learning of a positive result via two pink lines. It was the news she had dreaded.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/apr/21/pills-in-the-post-how-covid-reopened-the-abortion-wars


US/UK – Madison County man charged with making social media threats to abortion activists

by: Daniel Griffin
Posted: Apr 20, 2021

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — A London, Ohio man has been charged by a federal grand jury with making online threats against people connected with a non-profit organization whose mission is to help people access safe abortions.

James David Hampton, 40, was charged with 10 counts stemming from an alleged incident that took place on Aug. 26, 2020, according to a statement from Vipal J. Patel, acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio.

Continued: https://www.nbc4i.com/news/local-news/madison-county-man-charged-with-making-social-media-threats-to-abortion-activists/


German women’s health groups decry blow to abortion access

In a letter to the German health minister, a group of organizations warned that the care of women in emergency situations is ‘at risk’.

BY ASHLEIGH FURLONG
April 19, 2021

German Health Minister Jens Spahn has declined to comment on a call by women’s health groups for him to help ensure access to a drug used in medication-induced abortions, following a halt on parallel imports of the medicine. 

Women wanting such abortions in Germany face few options after the country’s drug regulator suggested that parallel importers stop bringing in Cytotec, which has the active ingredient misoprostol. Along with being used off label to induce abortion, it's prescribed for procedures such as miscarriages and before certain gynecological surgeries.

Continued: https://www.politico.eu/article/german-womens-health-groups-decry-blow-to-abortion-access/


Italian legal system forcing clandestine abortions

The law in Italy has made it difficult for women to have freedom of choice in the matter of abortion, some resorting to dangerous methods, writes Francesco Bertolucci.

By Francesco Bertolucci
17 April 2021

IN ITALY, almost 70% of the total number of gynaecologists deny the possibility of performing abortions because of their religious beliefs. This is an option guaranteed to doctors by Law 194 of 1978, which regulated access to abortion and decriminalised it. Until that year, anyone who procured or caused an abortion was liable to penalties ranging from six months to 12 years' imprisonment.

Silvana Agatone, gynaecologist and president of Laiga, a free Italian association of gynaecologists, spoke about the application of Law 194:

Continued: https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/italian-legal-system-forcing-clandestine-abortions,14997


Finland has the lowest abortion rate among Nordic countries

08 APRIL 2021

Recent figures from the Finnish Institute of Health and Welfare (THL) have revealed that Finland has the lowest rate of induced abortions among Nordic countries.

It also has the strictest abortion laws, being the only Nordic country where women need to acquire the signature of at least one doctor (in some cases two) to terminate an unwanted pregnancy.

Continued: https://www.helsinkitimes.fi/finland/news-in-brief/19010-finland-has-the-lowest-abortion-rate-among-nordic-countries.html


Women of colour endure discrimination in Austria’s gynecological care

Women with a migration background may be receiving wrong information about reproduction

Written by Fausia A.
Posted 8 April 2021

Abortion is legal in Austria within the first three months of pregnancy after consultation with a doctor. And every year, around 30,000 abortions are performed in Austria. Women of colour make up for more than a third of those who undergo an abortion, and nearly half of them were not born in Austria. Why is this?

According to a report by Austrian gynecologist Dr. Christian Fiala, 40 per cent of immigrants use effective prevention methods in comparison to 58 per cent of people born in Austria. It is considered the first, and to date, the only, representative study on the topic of sexuality and prevention in Austria for people aged between 16 and 49 years old.

Continued: https://globalvoices.org/2021/04/08/women-of-colour-endure-discrimination-in-austrias-gynecological-care/


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


French Manifesto of the 343 turns 50

April 5, 2021
By Marta Garde

Paris, Apr 5 (efe-epa).- Fifty years ago, 343 women in France were called ‘sluts’ for having the courage to sign a petition admitting to having had a then illegal abortion.

Claudine Monteil, one of the signatories, was 21 years old at the time and the youngest member of the group that included famous personalities such as feminist writer and philosopher Simone de Beauvoir and actress Catherine Deneuve.

Continued:  https://www.laprensalatina.com/french-manifesto-of-the-343-turns-50/


Westminster steps in after Northern Ireland fails to comply with abortion law change – how it happened

April 1, 2021
Claire Pierson

Abortion was decriminalised in Northern Ireland in October 2019. In March the following year, the legal framework was in place to provide terminations. A year later, though, it hasn’t happened. The Department of Health in Northern Ireland hasn’t provided a clear plan to commission permanent abortion services that would ensure provision would be budgeted for and available throughout all of Northern Ireland.

Now Westminster has had to intervene to ensure women in Northern Ireland can access abortion services they are legally entitled to. Abortions can be carried out in all circumstances up to week 12 of pregnancy, until week 24 if continuing the pregnancy would risk injury to the woman’s physical or mental health, and without a time limit in cases of severe or fatal foetal abnormality or risk to the life of the pregnant woman.

Continued: https://theconversation.com/westminster-steps-in-after-northern-ireland-fails-to-comply-with-abortion-law-change-how-it-happened-158239


Call for abortion protest ‘exclusion zones’ in Northern Ireland

By Jayne McCormack, BBC News NI Political Reporter
March 31, 2021

Exclusion zones should be introduced outside sexual health clinics and pregnancy counselling centres in NI to protect staff and women accessing services, a report has said.

Protests and demonstrations would not be allowed within the zones.

Continued: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-northern-ireland-56578466