Center for Reproductive Rights
Recent developments in Poland and Slovakia demonstrate the ongoing struggle to defend abortion rights against coordinated and systemic attacks on sexual and reproductive rights across the world.
Poland has one of the most restrictive abortion laws in Europe and access to abortion in the country is extremely limited—and often practically impossible. Poland is one of only two countries in the European Union that does not allow abortion on request or on broad social grounds. A recent ruling by the country’s Constitutional Tribunal will make abortion care even more difficult to access.
by Emma Reynolds, CNN
Sun November 1, 2020
(CNN)The Abortion Dream Team usually receives about 400 calls a month, from women seeking advice and information. Last week, the Polish advocacy group had 700 in the space of three days, according to team member Justyna Wydrzynska.
Some came from women who had just arrived at hospital to have abortions because of fetal defects -- only to be told to go home after Poland's highest court on October 22 imposed a near-total ban on abortion.
By Sophie Davies
OCTOBER 19, 2020
(Thomson Reuters Foundation) - When Ivana Gaziova had an abortion as a teenager, she didn’t want to talk about it to anyone apart from her closest cousin. Six years on, a push to tighten Slovakia’s abortion law impelled her to speak out.
Gaziova, a waitress from Bratislava, has gone public with her own story to campaign against the government-led proposal, which critics see as part of a trend towards more socially conservative policies in central Europe.
October 3, 2020
A new Slovak bill limiting access to abortion – proposed by the populist OĽaNO (Ordinary People) party MP Anna Záborská – adds to a heap of similar laws that have been proposed throughout the emerging Europe region in recent years. The bill was brought before the Slovak parliament on Tuesday, but despite a heated debate that continued until late in the evening, a final decision could not be reached and a formal vote on its adoption was postponed: for now.
The draft bill proposes doubling the amount of time a patient should wait between requesting and receiving an abortion, increasing the amount of personal data collected about the patient, and requiring a compulsory second medical opinion, along with other measures designed to make getting an abortion more difficult.
Radoslav Stoklasa, Reuters
Sep 24, 2020
BRATISLAVA — Christian lawmakers in Slovakia hope to win parliamentary approval for a tightening of abortion rules in a vote expected on Friday, part of a trend towards more socially conservative policies across parts of central Europe.
If adopted, the new regulation would still allow abortion on demand until 12 weeks but would double waiting periods to 96 hours, ban clinics from advertising services and make women declare their reasons for termination.
16 September 2020
Lawmakers in Slovakia must reject a draconian law that would impose new barriers to abortion and endanger the health and wellbeing of women and girls, said Amnesty International, ahead of the start of a parliamentary plenary session that will debate on a new abortion bill.
If passed, the law would introduce additional barriers to women and girls seeking abortion, doubling unnecessary waiting periods, imposing new medical authorization requirements for abortion on health grounds and forcing them to state their reasons for seeking care.
Campaigners fear that stark legislative proposals are helping to normalise a repressive discourse around reproductive rights in which concessions may be inevitable
31 July 2020
Defying the Coronavirus pandemic, women gathered on the streets of Bratislava, Liptovský Mikuláš, Banská Bystrica, and Košice in Slovakia, on 7 July, protesting the latest attack on their reproductive rights.
The women wore protective face masks and carried placards demanding that the Government not introduce restrictions to abortion law that threaten their freedom.
Miroslava German Sirotnikova
July 13, 2020
An economic crisis looms and the coronavirus pandemic is ongoing – but the most pressing issue on the minds of many Slovak lawmakers is limiting women’s reproductive rights.
This week, the Slovak parliament is debating, and likely to adopt, a new package of laws further limiting women’s access to abortion.
Women turn to backstreet abortions during coronavirus
(7 minute video)
Women across Europe are struggling to get abortions because of the coronavirus pandemic.
June 23, 2020
Slovakia’s Latest Regressive Abortion Bill Rejected: How Can Regressive Measures Against Women’s Reproductive Rights Be Countered?
8 Dec, 2019
by Adrianne Ramirez
Organization for World Peace
On 5th December, the proposed regressive abortion law in Slovakia was rejected following a Parliamentary vote. The draft legislation required women seeking abortion care to undergo a mandatory ultrasound scanning, to view and obtain the embryo or foetus’ ultrasound image, and where technically possible, to listen to its heartbeat. Furthermore, it sought to prohibit abortion advertising as well as imposing a fine of up to 66,400 EU on those who order or disseminate it. Proposed by a centre-right party in the ruling coalition, it was the latest step in a campaign to tighten restrictions on abortion in Slovakia, in wake of the September protests that demanded a total ban. Though rejected, the mere possibility of this legislation being approved depicts tangible hazards on women’s reproductive rights. Beyond its local implications, it consequently contributes to the recent erosion of these rights worldwide.