'Like Ireland on steroids': Malta's abortion taboo leaves women in despair
Border closures have trapped women seeking safe terminations and exposed the plight of those who cannot afford to travel
Megan Clement and Bertrand Borg in Valetta
Thu 11 Jun 2020
The nurse who told Marija she was still pregnant thought she was giving her patient good news. She chided Marija, who was seven weeks along, for not starting her vitamins sooner and sent her home.
But Marija (not her real name) was devastated. Six days earlier, she had tried to terminate the pregnancy with abortion pills she ordered online. But she had experienced terrible morning sickness throughout her pregnancy, and had thrown up after taking the first of the two pills. She was worried the medication had not had time to work before she vomited. After taking the second pill and bleeding for a few days, she went to the hospital to find out if she had miscarried.
Abortion Without Borders in the time of COVID-19
April 7, 2020
by Mara Clarke, Member, Abortion Without Borders/Founder, Abortion Support Network
In my 18+ years of talking about abortion, this is the first time that words have failed me. Please bear with me, while I try to explain to you the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic on Abortion Without Borders (www.abortion.eu) and the people who contact us, seeking abortions.
Things started changing for Abortion Without Borders (AWB) on 13 March, when Poland announced they would be cancelling all flights, trains and busses – and stopping international post. Like so much of the news around Covid-19, this news was half true and some of these services continued to run. Before the Covid-19 crisis, the Abortion Without Border’s Polish helpline received an average of 300 calls per month. In three days alone, from 13-15 March, the helpline received 114 calls. From 13 March until 31 March, the helpline took 308 calls. This is a full month of calls in approximately two weeks.
Abortion Support Network expands service to Malta and Gibraltar (Press Release)
Published on February 14, 2019
In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, ASN brings the gift of confidential, non-judgemental information and funding for abortion costs to new countries
Roses are Red, Violets are Blue
Ireland has safe legal abortion
So we’re expanding to help Malta and Gibraltar too!
Abortion Support Network (ASN), a small UK-based charity providing financial assistance, practical information and accommodation to those living in countries with restrictive abortion laws, announced today that it has launched its service to people resident in Malta and Gibraltar. As of today, anyone in those countries will be able to ring the ASN helpline, visit the ASN website or send an email and receive confidential, non-judgmental information about the least expensive way to arrange abortion and travel, clinics that ASN works with in several EU countries, and, where necessary, receive financial help towards the cost of travelling from your home country and paying privately to access a safe, legal abortion.
Currently Malta is the only country in Europe where abortion is completely against the law, whereas the law in Gibraltar allows abortion to save a woman’s life.
Meet the activist who’s helped thousands of Irish women access safe abortions
Posted by Moya Crockett
Published Sep 10, 2018
Woman of the Week is Stylist’s weekly celebration of women who are making a difference to society. This week, we meet Mara Clarke, the founder of the Abortion Support Network, to discuss how things have changed since Ireland’s abortion referendum.
Mara Clarke was in Dublin when the results of the Irish abortion referendum were announced. The founder of the Abortion Support Network (ASN) – a grassroots organisation that provides women with advice and financial aid so that they can access safe terminations – desperately hoped abortion would be decriminalised in Ireland. But she didn’t really think it would happen.
“When the exit polls came out, I didn’t believe it,” she says today. “Even when the results were officially announced, I still didn’t believe it. But then everything went crazy.”
Ireland's Catholic traditions tested as abortion referendum looms
Abortion remains such a taboo in Ireland that it's rare for women to speak openly about it. A public admission could result in a 14-year prison sentence.
by Saphora Smith and Ziad Jaber
DUBLIN — Rita Harrold's decision to end her pregnancy turned her into a criminal in the eyes of the law.
More than four decades after being legalized in the U.S., abortion remains illegal in almost all cases in the Irish Republic.
Five years ago, Harrold took abortion pills that had been smuggled into the country.
Meet the American helping Irish women get abortions
By Haley Joelle
March 15, 2018
LONDON -- Karen, a law student from a small town in rural Ireland, traveled for hours to get to London to have a secret abortion. The procedure is illegal in her own country, so she lied to her family and friends -- everyone apart from her boyfriend and the American who arranged her trip to Britain, Mara Clarke.
The 8th amendment to the Irish constitution, passed in 1983, formally equates the "right to life of the unborn" fetus to the "right to life of the mother." While terminating a pregnancy on Irish soil is against the law, barring a couple of exceptions, Irish women are permitted to travel abroad to terminate their pregnancies, and recent data i