U.N. and advocates raise concerns of abortion access for Ukrainian refugees in Poland

May 17, 2022
PATRICK ADAMS, NPR

Ukrainian women who were raped by Russian soldiers are among the millions of refugees who have fled to Poland.

And they now find themselves in a country that severely restricts access to reproductive health care, including both contraception and abortion.

Continued: https://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsoda/2022/05/17/994654590/u-n-and-advocates-raise-concerns-of-abortion-access-for-ukrainian-refugees-in-po


What U.S. women can learn from Poland’s recent abortion restrictions

"It may be difficult to get abortions in Poland, but we have our ways," Polish feminist Krystyna Kacpura says.

May 16, 2022
By Lauren Egan and Corky Siemaszko

WARSAW, Poland — Americans fearing the worst if the Supreme Court repeals Roe v. Wade could look to the Poles for tips about how to fight for abortion rights and find ways around harsh government-imposed restrictions.

Poland, along with Malta, has the strictest abortion restrictions in Europe. It is allowed only in cases of rape, which are difficult to document, or when the life of the woman is endangered. And anyone helping a woman get the procedure for any other reason, including by prescribing pregnancy-terminating medication, could be charged with a crime — similar to what’s already happening in Texas, said Venny Ala-Siurua of Women on Web, an international online abortion service that has been helping women around the world, including thousands in Poland.

Continued: https://www.nbcnews.com/news/world/us-women-can-learn-polands-recent-abortion-restrictions-rcna28750


‘Declare it to a doctor, and it’s over’: Ukrainian women face harsh reality of Poland’s abortion laws

Women turn to aid groups for help, with many unaware their rights to reproductive healthcare have vanished upon crossing the border

Weronika Strzyżyńska
Tue 10 May 2022

When the first Russian bombs fell on Ukraine, Myroslava Marchenko was a gynaecologist at a private clinic in Kyiv. The next day, one of her patients was due to have an abortion after prenatal tests showed a high chance of Down’s syndrome.

Instead, like millions across the country, Marchenko and her patient fled to safety, crossing the border into Poland where abortions due to foetal abnormalities – or “on eugenic grounds” in the language of the country’s constitutional tribunal – are illegal.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2022/may/10/ukrainian-women-face-harsh-reality-poland-abortion-laws


Killed by abortion laws: five women whose stories we must never forget

As the US supreme court threatens to undo 49 years of access to safe and legal terminations, five women who died because of bans on abortion stand as warnings of what is at stake globally

Joe Parkin Daniels, Sarah Johnson, Weronika Strzyżyńska, Kaamil Ahmed and Mercy Kahenda
Sat 7 May 2022

[Stories about:]

Savita Halappanavar, Ireland
Olga Reyes, Nicaragua
‘Izabela’, Poland
‘Manuela’, El Salvador
‘Mildred’, Kenya

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2022/may/07/killed-by-abortion-laws-five-women-whose-stories-we-must-never-forget


Abortion laws in Europe in 4 charts

Malta is the only EU country with a total ban on abortion, while Poland controversially imposed a near-total ban in 2020.

BY GIOVANNA COI
May 3, 2022

In most European countries, women are legally permitted to have an abortion on request, with Malta the only EU state with a complete ban on the procedure.

In Poland, however, the Constitutional Tribunal rolled back women’s right to terminate pregnancies in 2020, ruling that women can undergo an abortion only in cases of rape, incest, or if their life is in danger.

Continued: https://www.politico.eu/article/abortion-chart-world-map-europe-law-illegal-roe-v-wade-legislation/


Ukrainians face rape, trafficking risk while those in Poland cannot access abortion

Ukrainian women fleeing the war are at risk of sexual violence, rape, and trafficking and those who are pregnant as a result cannot get an abortion in Poland due to one of Europe’s strictest anti-abortion laws.

By Giedre Peseckyte | EURACTIV.com
Apr 27, 2022

During the first days of the war, a 29-year-old Ukrainian woman fled the country with her two children. After about a week of travelling, she crossed the Ukrainian-Polish border, having never visited before and not speaking the language. As she travelled at night, by the side of the road, she saw groups of men holding signs with the name of Polish cities written on them in Cyrillic.

“You might have heard the great solidarity from the Polish people, and you might be tempted to get into one of the cars parked on the side of the road before the laws were passed and before drivers were registered,” said Anna Dąbrowska, president of Homo Faber, a Polish human rights organisation, during a speech to LIBE and FEMM parliamentarians on 21 April.

Continued: https://www.euractiv.com/section/health-consumers/news/ukrainians-face-rape-trafficking-risk-while-those-in-poland-cannot-access-abortion/


Poland’s Anti-Abortion Laws Obstruct Humanitarian Assistance to Ukrainian Pregnant Refugees and Rape Survivors

As sexual violence on children and young women is increasingly reported, pregnant women, including rape survivors, struggle to access sexual healthcare under Poland’s strict abortion laws

by Mathilde Grandjean 
April 20, 2022

Since the start of the war, over 4.6 million Ukrainian refugees – 90% of whom are women and children – have fled their homes to seek sanctuary in neighbouring countries. Poland has received the highest number of displaced Ukrainians, as nearly 3 million refugees have entered the country since February. Amongst them are rape survivors and pregnant refugees in urgent need of medical help, including access to emergency contraception and abortion.

However, Poland’s near-total ban on abortion added to a lack of key sexual and reproductive health medicines and products obstruct humanitarian efforts to provide medical assistance to rape survivors and refugees who wish to terminate an unwanted pregnancy.

Continued:  https://impakter.com/poland-anti-abortion-laws-obstruct-humanitarian-assistance-to-ukrainian-pregnant-refugees-and-rape-survivors/


Ukrainian refugees reignite abortion debate in Poland

Tuesday, 19 April 2022
By Liv Klingert

The controversial debate on abortion in Poland has been reignited following the arrival of Ukrainian women refugees who have been victims of sexual violence by Russian soldiers in Ukraine.

Under current restrictive abortion laws, it is uncertain whether women who become pregnant through rape and seek refuge in Poland can still have legal and safe abortions there, De Standaard reported.

Continued: https://www.brusselstimes.com/belgium/218090/ukrainian-refugees-ignite-abortion-debate-in-poland


Pregnant Ukrainian refugees struggle to access abortion after escaping war for Poland

Abortion and rights groups have told i that Ukrainian women raped during the war have been unable to access terminations

By Isabella Bengoechea, Alannah Francis
April 16, 2022

Pregnant Ukrainian refugees including victims of rape who fled to Poland are struggling to access abortions.

Abortion providers and civil society groups have warned that women who have escaped from Ukraine are being denied terminations under Poland’s near-total ban on the procedure.

Continued: https://inews.co.uk/news/pregnant-ukrainian-refugees-struggle-to-access-abortion-after-escaping-war-for-poland-1579458


A Polish woman is on trial for helping someone get an abortion. Here’s why it matters

Justyna Wydrzyńska faces up to three years in prison for trying to help a woman end her pregnancy. She says she's a cautionary tale for people in the United States.

April 15, 2022
By Danielle Campoamor

A woman in Poland is on trial for helping another woman access abortion care — and experts say her experience could foreshadow what could become more common in the United States as more states criminalize abortion.

Justyna Wydrzyńska, 47, faces up to three years in prison for giving another woman abortion pills — oral medications that stop and help the body pass an unwanted pregnancy. The pills are classified as "essential medicines" by the World Health Organization, and studies show they are safer than Viagra and Tylenol.

Continued: https://www.today.com/parents/pregnancy/polish-abortion-trial-rcna23831