Press release, 25 January 2021: for immediate publication
After the decision by the Argentine Congress on 29 December 2020 to legalise abortion for both public health reasons and in support of women’s rights, everyone is waiting to see what the rest of Latin America will do. Responses from Mexico, Brazil, Jamaica – and now Honduras – have already become public. The response from the Congress of Honduras is bad news for all women and girls in the country and in the region – it shows a complete disregard for Honduran women’s health and lives. Yet ironically, it is due to be ratified on Honduran Women’s Day without consultation and with undue haste.
In every country in Latin America, there is a strong women’s movement that has been calling for safe and legal abortion for many years. Although legal reform has been slow, due to the powerful influence of conservative religious and political forces, many changes have still taken place.
By Samantha Schmidt and Caroline Kitchener
Jan. 16, 2021
Derrick Evans walked with his phone out in front of him, camera facing forward, as he advanced on the patient in the abortion clinic parking lot. Surrounding the car, clinic volunteers tried to shield the patient with umbrellas and their own bodies. It was no use: On this February morning in 2019, Evans captured the patient on Facebook live, streaming to tens of thousands of followers.
“You will not do this in secret in West Virginia,” Evans said. He wore a “Make America Great Again” hat, as he did every week when he protested outside the Women’s Health Center, the only abortion clinic left in the state.
LAST UPDATED JANUARY 15, 2021
Last week, the world watched in horror as a pro-Trump mob, urged by the President himself, attacked the U.S. Capitol in an effort to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election. Thousands of angry people, rushed the Capitol building, overwhelming the law enforcement officers who were staged outside. They smashed windows and broke down doors; thousands of them flooded into the Capitol building itself. For several hours, they occupied congressional offices and triumphantly paraded through the House and Senate floors, wreaking havoc and calling for violence against and death for politicians and police officers, alike. By the end of the seditious melee, five people were dead.
One of the people there was John Brockhoeft, who posted online about his presence at the Capitol. Brockhoeft isn’t just any Trump supporter. He’s also a convicted anti-abortion terrorist.
It’s no coincidence several “pro-life” activists were in DC last week.
BECCA ANDREWS, Mother Jones
Jan 14, 2021
A week after the violent insurrection at the Capitol, we’re learning more and more about the people who charged the building. And recent reporting from Vice, Jezebel, and others reveal there were quite a few anti-abortion extremists at the pro-Trump rally, if not in the Capitol afterward as well. You’re probably thinking, hmm, ok, that makes sense—and it does! But the overlap of these universes cannot simply be boiled down to the fact that Trump supporters are more likely to strongly oppose abortion.
The violence we saw at the Capitol—and the inflammatory rhetoric and disinformation that led up to it—in fact mirrors what’s been plaguing the debate around abortion for several years.
From fire bombings, shootings, and ceaseless harassment, anti-abortion violence has wreaked havoc on clinics for decades.
Jan 8, 2021
Trump supporters laid siege to our nation’s capital on Wednesday, storming past
a flaccid and enabling law enforcement presence in an attempt to stage a coup.
As they were filling the halls of Congress—stealing lecterns and paintings, and
taking selfies at Nancy’s Pelosi’s desk—pundits lamented: This is not America;
this is not who we are. Some even marveled at the cooperation from law
enforcement, wondering how security could have been so lax.
Unfortunately, abortion providers are all too familiar with the sort of
violence that played out at the Capitol.
BY KRYSTYNA KACPURA
OCTOBER 30, 2020
Planning in Poland Poland’s anti-abortion laws have always been among the most restrictive in Europe. Until this week the procedure was only permitted when the pregnancy posed a threat to the woman’s life; if there was a fatal fetal abnormality or in cases rape or incest.
However on Oct. 22 the country’s constitutional court ruled that a fatal fetal abnormality was not justification for terminating a pregnancy and violates the constitution. For the over 10 million women of reproductive age in Poland, this ruling effectively puts in place a complete ban on abortion.
The president has given fringe anti-abortion groups unprecedented influence.
OCTOBER 8, 2020
By NEHA WADEKAR
On a rainy morning in May 2019, Dr. John Nyamu was attending to patients on the cluttered first floor of an office building in downtown Nairobi when he heard raucous shouts from down the street. A caravan of protesters was winding toward him, a few hundred people teeming in the streets, bellowing through loudspeakers, and stopping traffic.
As the crowd reached his building, Nyamu, a well-known gynecologist who performs abortions in a private clinic, peered through his window at the protesters below to make out what they were saying. It turns out they were targeting him. “Abortion is murder! Abortion must go! Nyamu must go!” Some held signs with photos of mutilated fetuses. Others clutched baby-size cardboard coffins with crosses on them.
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.
'She told me I was a murderer and killing my baby. She then showed me pictures of what it'll look like in a leaflet then said the drugs weren't safe and brought religion into it,' says teenager
Maya Oppenheim, Women’s Correspondent
Sep 23, 2020
Anti-abortion protesters have begun demonstrations outside a dozen abortion clinics across England which will continue for 40 days – risking the health of thousands of women.
40 Days for Life, an American-based anti-abortion group which have stepped up their tactics in the wake of the coronavirus crisis, are known for harassing women who want to have a pregnancy terminated.
by MARTHA BURK
What’s at Stake is a new bi-weekly series of abbreviated excepts from Ms. money editor Martha Burk’s book “Your Voice, Your Vote 2020-2021.”
Abortion was legal in the United States from the time the earliest settlers arrived, until states began to criminalize it in the 1800s. By 1910 it was illegal in all but one state, unless in a doctor’s judgment needed to save the woman’s life.
Since very few abortions could be certified as necessary to save a woman’s life, women were forced into the back alleys. In the years before the Supreme Court legalized the procedure in 1973 with the Roe v. Wade ruling, estimates of illegal abortions ranged as high as 1.2 million per year—some resulting in death.