Three women on their fight for abortion rights in Poland

Academic Agnieszka Graff, lawyer Karolina Więckiewicz and gynaecologist Anna Parzyńska discuss their fight for abortion rights. An attempt by authorities to impose a near-total ban on terminations has sparked mass demonstrations across the country

Podcast: 00:24:10
Mon 14 Dec 2020

On 22 October, Poland’s constitutional court ruled to ban abortions in cases of congenital foetal defects, even if the foetus has no chance of survival. The decision by the court’s 15 pro-ruling party judges, many of them appointed unlawfully, would allow terminations only in instances of rape, incest and when the mother’s life is at risk – a tiny fraction of cases. Women’s groups estimate that an additional 200,000 Polish women have abortions either illegally or abroad each year – Poland has some of Europe’s strictest abortion laws.

Continued:  https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/audio/2020/dec/15/three-women-on-their-fight-for-abortion-rights-in-poland


Polish women travel abroad for abortions ahead of law change

Support services in Poland and abroad say numbers increasing even before legislation is tightened

Shaun Walker and Anna Koslerova in Prague
Sun 13 Dec 2020

Polish women are increasingly being forced to travel abroad to seek abortions even though a court ruling to tighten the country’s already strict laws has not yet coming into force, activists have said.

The constitutional court ruled in October
that abortion was illegal even in cases where there were severe foetal
abnormalities. Around 1,000 abortions a year – almost all of the country’s
legal abortion procedures – are carried out for this reason.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/dec/13/polish-women-travel-abroad-for-abortions-ahead-of-new-law


Abortion Without Borders helps more than 5,000 people in Poland in first year

Celebrates with billboards advertising their service in Warsaw

Thursday, December 10, 2020, Warsaw
Aborcja Bez Granic / Abortion Without Borders

Abortion Without Borders helps more than 5,000 people in Poland in first year; celebrates with billboards advertising their service in Warsaw.

The Abortion Without Borders initiative has helped more than 5,000 people in Poland since its launch one year ago. The group has provided pregnancy options counselling, information about safe abortion with pills in Poland, and funding and practical support for abortion outside Poland. To celebrate, the group has engaged billboards in Warsaw advertising their organisation and will hold a press conference in Warsaw at 11 am local time. In their first year, Abortion Without Borders has:

Continued: https://womenhelp.org/en/page/1265/abortion-without-borders-helps-more-than-5-000-people-in-poland-in


In Europe and the US, abortion rights are under renewed threat

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.

Continued: https://www.cnn.com/2020/11/01/europe/abortion-rights-poland-us-slovakia-intl/index.html


Polish pro-choice campaigner helps women bypass abortion law

Issued on: 31/10/2020

Seven years ago, Natalia Broniarczyk had an abortion despite stringent Polish legislation against it.

Now, she is helping other women do the same and taking part in mass protests against a further tightening of an already highly restrictive law.

Continued: https://www.france24.com/en/live-news/20201031-polish-pro-choice-campaigner-helps-women-bypass-abortion-law


Abortion Without Borders: a bold, feminist reply to Poland’s draconian laws

Meet the women across Europe who are resisting threats, both old and new, to reproductive rights in Poland.

Claudia Torrisi
28 September 2020

“It was the most incredible, amazing experience of my life,” the veteran women’s rights activist Mara Clarke told me. “It was totally insane. But also really wonderful. And proof that sisters and siblings can get shit done when they want to.”

In December 2019, three months before coronavirus was declared a global pandemic, a group of women from across Europe launched a bold, feminist response to Poland’s draconian anti-abortion laws: Abortion Without Borders.

Continued: https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/5050/abortion-without-borders-a-bold-feminist-reply-to-polands-draconian-laws/


Polish government honours pro-life activist who stopped teen having abortion by informing her family

Polish government honours pro-life activist who stopped teen having abortion by informing her family

May 18, 2020

Poland’s justice ministry has awarded an honour to a pro-life activist, Zuzanna Wiewiórka, who prevented a teenager from having an abortion by informing the girl’s parents about her plans. Some have criticised the award, saying that Wiewiórka violated the girl’s privacy and harassed her online.

On Friday, during a press conference broadcast with the title “Stop hate against defenders of life”, the ministry presented Wiewiórka with a medal for “merit in the field of justice”, reports Tok FM.

Continued: https://notesfrompoland.com/2020/05/18/polish-government-honours-pro-life-activist-who-stopped-teen-having-abortion-by-informing-her-family/


As Poland defies ‘European values,’ women resist on streets and online

As Poland defies 'European values,' women resist on streets and online

By Eliza Mackintosh, CNN
Wed April 22, 2020

(CNN)Marta Gorczynska got in her car and started driving.

She didn't have a destination as she passed through Warsaw's mostly deserted streets, but, just before noon last Tuesday, she got a text with directions: go to Rondo Dmowskiego.

Gorczynska, a human rights lawyer, was among a throng of protesters that used their vehicles to defy Poland's lockdown and block the main roundabout in the capital, honking their horns and shouting slogans against a citizen's bill to tighten what are already some of the most restrictive abortion laws anywhere in Europe.

Continued: https://www.cnn.com/2020/04/22/europe/poland-protest-abortion-lockdown-intl/index.html


Abortion activists in Poland fret as coronavirus curbs access

Abortion activists in Poland fret as coronavirus curbs access

Alicja Ptak, Reuters
March 21, 2020

WARSAW — Natalia Broniarczyk, an activist with a charity that assists Polish women who want to terminate pregnancies, says its hot line began ringing non-stop after the government announced border closures to stem the coronavirus outbreak last week.

Many callers were worried about their shipments of abortion pills, which are illegal in Poland, and others feared they would not be able to reach clinics abroad in time to have the procedure, which is unavailable in Poland in most cases.

Continued: https://nationalpost.com/pmn/health-pmn/abortion-activists-in-poland-fret-as-coronavirus-curbs-access


Pro-choice activists launch abortion initiative in Poland

Pro-choice activists launch abortion initiative in Poland
Abortion Without Borders to offer women advice and funds to seek treatment abroad

Shaun Walker, Central and eastern Europe correspondent
Tue 10 Dec 2019

An international group of pro-choice campaigners will launch an initiative in Poland this week to provide advice and funding for women to travel abroad to have abortions.

Poland has some of Europe’s most restrictive abortion laws, and proposals backed by the rightwing government to introduce a total ban on abortions in 2016 were scrapped only after large-scale protests.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/dec/10/pro-choice-activists-launch-abortion-initiative-in-poland