USA – The Long Campaign to Turn Birth Control Into the New Abortion

Now that the fall of Roe v. Wade has ended the constitutional right to abortion, many in the religious right have a new goal: undermining trust in, and limiting access to, hormonal contraception – including the pill.

May 20, 2023

When the Supreme Court’s decision undoing Roe v. Wade came down, anti-abortion groups were jubilant – but far from satisfied. Many in the movement have a new target: hormonal birth control. It seems contradictory; doesn’t preventing unwanted pregnancies also prevent abortions? But anti-abortion groups don’t see it that way. They claim that hormonal contraceptives like IUDs and the pill can actually cause abortions.

One prominent group making this claim is Students for Life of America, whose president has said she wants such contraceptives to be illegal. The fast-growing group has built a social media campaign spreading the false idea that hormonal birth control is an abortifacient. Reporter and producer Alaa Mostafa teams up with UC Berkeley journalism and law students to dig into the world of young anti-abortion influencers and how medical misinformation gains traction on TikTok, Instagram and YouTube, with far-reaching consequences.  


The ‘headstrong, uncompromising, eccentric’ entrepreneur who helped change Canada’s birth-control law

Toronto’s Harold Fine did a roaring trade in condoms starting in the late ’50s. Unfortunately, his business was illegal. He thought it was past time for reform

Written by Nate Hendley
Nov 23, 2022

In the aftermath of the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling overturning the constitutional right to abortion, some American politicians have mused about tackling the right to birth control next.

Anyone aghast at such a thought should remember that it was illegal to sell contraceptives in Canada until 1969. Various factors led to the law’s reform — among them, the efforts of an oddball Toronto entrepreneur.


USA: Abortion is down — so the GOP’s coming for your birth control

Abortion is down — so the GOP’s coming for your birth control
Lower abortion rates suggest women are getting better at preventing pregnancy. So the right is trying to stop them

Amanda Marcotte
Oct 22, 2017

The abortion rate has fallen yet again, according to a new study published in the American Journal of Public Health, dropping by 25 percent from 2008 to 2014. Thanks, Obama! Or really, thanks to the widespread use of contraception, which researchers Rachel Jones and Jenna Jerman of the Guttmacher Institute argue is the largest single factor in the drop in the abortion rate. And in fairness, the Obama administration did significant work to expand contraception access through the Affordable Care Act.

Fewer abortions is what Republicans and conservatives claim they want, which is why they are constantly passing arcane restrictions on abortion access. So why is the Trump administration ramping up the war on contraception? A leaked White House budget memo, published Thursday by Brian Beutler of Crooked Media, exposed the far-reaching anti-birth-control agenda of the Trump administration.

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USA: Does the Trump administration want more unintended pregnancies?

Does the Trump administration want more unintended pregnancies?

By Editorial Board
October 7, 2017

THE TRUMP administration on Friday tore a big hole in an important public-health law, eroding the federal requirement that health insurance plans cover contraception. The administration argued that not many women will ultimately be affected. We hope that is true.

The contraception mandate, which stemmed from the Affordable Care Act, originally offered an exemption to churches and their closely connected organizations — but not to religiously affiliated universities, charities, small businesses and other groups that wanted no involvement in providing birth control to anyone, and particularly not through the health plans they offered. Successive rounds of litigation finally pushed the objectors and the government close to a deal, in which religiously conscious groups could opt out of offering contraception coverage in their insurance plans and federal authorities would find ways to serve employees still seeking birth control. The Supreme Court last year suggested they could come to an arrangement.

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India: Worrying signs for Tamil Nadu women as contraceptive use decreases

Worrying signs for Tamil Nadu women as contraceptive use decreases

By Sushmitha Ramakrishnan | Express News Service
Published: 26th September 2017

CHENNAI: Tamil Nadu is one of the most urbanised states in the country. But the latest National Family Health Survey (NFHS) for 2015-16 has found that the State has seen an eight per cent decline in use of all kinds of contraceptives in the last decade. The decline is five per cent more than the national average.

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U.S.: She’s 17 and Needs Birth Control. Do We Turn Our Backs?

She’s 17 and Needs Birth Control. Do We Turn Our Backs?

Nicholas Kristof
MARCH 4, 2017

LEWISTON, Me. — She is 17 years old, has an alarming itch “down there” and has come to the family planning clinic because she doesn’t know where else to go.

Sara Hayes, a nurse practitioner, breezes into the examining room and soothes the teenager. Hayes takes a swab and quickly diagnoses a mild yeast infection — perhaps from scented tampons — while setting aside samples to test later for gonorrhea and chlamydia. Then Hayes explains birth control options, and the girl brightens at the idea of an invisible implant in her arm, fully covered by insurance. It will last at least three years and be more than 99 percent effective at preventing pregnancy.

Continued at source: New York Times:

Contraception Atlas for Europe

Contraception Atlas

Download the full report: map_cci-v5.pdf (pdf 3,2 mb)
What is the Atlas?

The Contraception Atlas is a map that scores 45 countries throughout geographical Europe on access to modern contraception.

The rankings -- which are based on access to contraceptive supplies, family planning counseling and online information -- reveal a very uneven picture across Europe.

The European Parliamentary Forum on Population & Development (EPF) has produced the Atlas in partnership with Third-i, while experts in sexual and reproductive health and rights designed the methodology.

“Access to contraception should be a key concern of governments in empowering citizens to plan their families and lives. Yet every country we analysed should be doing more to improve access. Our findings show that for many European countries, ensuring that people have choice over their reproductive lives is not a priority.” commented Neil Datta, EPF Secretary.

Continued at source: European Parliamentary Forum on Population & Development:

U.S.: Letters from Women Pleading for Abortion, Sent in 1917, Mirror Emails Sent Today

Letters from Women Pleading for Abortion, Sent in 1917, Mirror Emails Sent Today
by Callie Beusman
Feb 15 2017

In the early 1900s, desperate American women wrote letters to the founder of Planned Parenthood begging for help with unwanted pregnancies. A century later, they're sending eerily similar messages to an international abortion-by-mail service.

"I'm in the family way again, and I'm nearly crazy, for when my husband finds out that I'm going to have another baby, he will beat the life out of me... Please write to me and help me."

"I am in need of help desperately. I am pregnant and cannot have this baby. My husband is very abusive and did it on purpose because I want to leave. I need help... Please help me."

Both of these pleas come from American women—both of them pregnant against their will, with few options, and fearing for their lives and safety. The first was written in 1917 and published in Birth Control Review, a twentieth-century magazine devoted to extolling the virtues of contraception. The second was written almost a full century later. It's one of countless frantic emails sent by American women to Women on Web, an abortion-by-mail service located in the Netherlands.

Continued at source: Broadly/Vice:

U.S.: The IUD rush: Why women are seeking out birth control that can outlast a presidency

The IUD rush: Why women are seeking out birth control that can outlast a presidency
By Lisa Bonos
February 7, 2017

The day after President Trump’s inauguration, millions of women of all ages marched in the streets of major cities. In the past few months, there’s been another, quieter march that’s far more personal, yet still political. If you’re not a woman of childbearing age or a health-care provider, you might not have noticed it. Since the election, women have been seeing their gynecologists and visiting Planned Parenthood offices specifically to ask about birth control.

Why the rush? For starters, if the Affordable Care Act is repealed, as Trump has promised, contraceptives could get a lot more expensive. Since 2012, the ACA has required that private health insurance plans cover prescription contraceptives with no cost-sharing for patients. But cost isn’t the only concern. Women see a Congress that is threatening to defund Planned Parenthood, a vice president who has promised to restrict access to abortion, a Supreme Court nominee who could be hostile to women’s health care — and they want to do whatever they can to avoid an unplanned pregnancy in the next few years.

Continued at source: Washington Post: