Abortion access expert talks about the U.S. position in the global abortion landscape

Rollback of abortion rights post-Dobbs makes U.S. a global outlier.

by Rachel Crumpler
June 5, 2024

Since the Dobbs decision in June 2022, nearly half of states in the United States — including North Carolina — have curtailed access to abortion by implementing increased restrictions.

The significant rollback in abortion legality throughout much of the country puts the United States in sharp contrast to the global trend of loosening abortion laws and increasing protections for abortion rights.

Continued: https://www.northcarolinahealthnews.org/2024/06/05/abortion-access-expert-talks-us-position-in-the-global-abortion-landscape/

Post-Roe Era Tests Abortion Laws Worldwide

As abortion comes under fire in the United States, some countries have taken a stance toward expanding access

by Mariel Ferragamo
June 5, 2024

As nations around the world have expanded access to reproductive health services, the quality, accessibility, and safety of abortion care has improved, as has maternal health. International authorities have called abortion a crucial aspect of health care. 

Still, opposition to abortion remains strong in parts of the world, especially in the United States. When the United States overturned the right to abortion in 2022, the ruling rattled the nation. Yet the moment spoke to the country's paradoxical and pendulous history with abortion. Even though the United States permitted the practice for decades within its own borders, it has long restricted funding for abortion care abroad.

Continued: https://www.thinkglobalhealth.org/article/post-roe-era-tests-abortion-laws-worldwide

We need to talk about how U.S. policy is sabotaging reproductive rights in Africa

A controversial US policy is jeopardizing family planning services and fueling a maternal health crisis in Ethiopia and Uganda.

By Annabel Rocha
May 20, 2024

The lack of reproductive health services in Uganda and Ethiopia leaves those experiencing unwanted pregnancies with few options, and poorer communities with even fewer. Only 13 to 16% of poor, married women in Uganda use modern contraception, according to Guttmacher, resulting in four in 10 births being unplanned. In Ethiopia, 4.5 million women have an unmet need for modern contraception, with 46% of the estimated 4.6 million pregnancies in the country unintended. To support family planning services, these governments rely on international and U.S. funding, which has devastating consequences for health initiatives when support is withdrawn.

Continued: https://www.reckon.news/family/2024/05/how-us-policy-is-sabotaging-reproductive-rights-in-africa.html

The Terrifying Global Reach of the American Anti-Abortion Movement

Conservatives have not limited their attack on reproductive rights to the United States. They’ve been busy imposing their will on other countries, too—with disastrous consequences for millions of poor women.

Jodi Enda
March 18, 2024

Because Editar Ochieng knew the three young men, she didn’t think twice when they beckoned her into a house in an isolated area near the Nairobi River. One was like a brother; the other two were her neighbors in the sprawling Kenyan slum of Kibera.

Ochieng did not know the woman who performed her abortion. She and a friend scoured Nairobi until they found her, an untrained practitioner who worked in the secrecy of her home and charged a fraction of what a medical professional would. Mostly, what Ochieng remembers is the agony when this stranger inserted something into her vagina and “pierced” her womb. “It was really very painful. Really, really, really painful,” she told me. Afterward, Ochieng said, she cut up her mattress to use in place of sanitary pads, which she could not afford. She was 16 years old.

Continued: https://newrepublic.com/article/179485/american-anti-abortion-movement-terrifying-global-reach

Biden hopes abortion will keep him in the White House. But has he done enough to protect rights?

The president has made big promises and held the line against legal challenges, but activists say he could be doing more

Carter Sherman
Fri 26 Jan 2024

Joe Biden’s re-election campaign has made a big bet that outrage over abortion will keep the president in the White House come November.

Over the last several days, the Biden administration has unleashed a blitz of ads and events to spotlight the devastation wrought by the overturning of Roe v Wade. Biden met with a reproductive health task force, while his vice-president, Kamala Harris – who he has entrusted to lead this effort – embarked on a national tour to talk about abortion. They even devoted their first joint campaign stop of 2024 to the issue.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2024/jan/26/biden-abortion-rights-expand-protections

In the Dominican Republic, I Saw Broken U.S. Abortion Policy Firsthand

U.S. lawmakers spoke out about abortion access in the Dominican Republic. The Biden administration didn't back them.

JAN 16, 2024

In early December, a delegation of U.S. state lawmakers traveled to the Dominican Republic as part of a trip organized by State Innovation Exchange and the Women’s Equality Center. I was one of a group of journalists, and the only one based full time in the United States, who tagged along.

The lawmakers on the trip were New York assembly members Karines Reyes, Amanda Septimo, and Jessica González-Rojas—the former executive director of the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Justice—along with North Carolina state Sen. Natalie Murdock and Arizona state Sen. Anna Hernandez.

Continued: https://rewirenewsgroup.com/2024/01/16/in-the-dominican-republic-i-saw-broken-u-s-abortion-policy-firsthand/

Australia’s support for safe abortion globally

by Bettina Baldeschi, Daile Kelleher and Anu Kumar
10 October 2023

Last month, Western Australia passed landmark reforms removing barriers to accessing abortion, bringing it into line with other states in Australia. While there are still practical barriers to access, particularly for marginalised groups, every state and territory in Australia has now decriminalised abortion, and the National Women’s Health Strategy lays out a framework for universal access by 2030.

Globally, the picture is very different. Half of all pregnancies worldwide are unintended. In Asia and the Pacific there are 140 million women with an unmet need for family planning. 13% of maternal deaths worldwide result from unsafe abortions.

Continued: https://devpolicy.org/australias-support-for-safe-abortion-globally-20231010/

PEPFAR Reauthorization: The Debate About Abortion

Kellie Moss and Jennifer Kates
Sep 21, 2023

Despite a long history of broad and bipartisan support, reauthorization of the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) is currently being held up by congressional debate around abortion. PEPFAR, first created in 2003 by President George W. Bush and reauthorized three times thus far, is the U.S. government’s signature global health effort in the fight against HIV. Widely regarded as one of the most successful programs in global health history, PEPFAR reports having saved 25 million lives due to its efforts, and KFF analyses have found a significant impact of the program beyond HIV, including large reductions in both maternal and child mortality and significant increases in some childhood immunization rates. Still, its fourth reauthorization has been drawn into broader U.S. political debate about abortion, in the wake of the Supreme Court’s Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization decision (which overturned the nationwide right to obtain an abortion), even though U.S. law prohibits the use of U.S. foreign assistance, including PEPFAR funding, for abortion. This policy watch provides an overview of the current debate and issues.

Continued: https://www.kff.org/policy-watch/pepfar-reauthorization-the-debate-about-abortion/

Biden’s Budget Is an Opportunity to Promote and Protect Abortion Access


Abortion is healthcare, and access to healthcare is a human right everyone is entitled to, no matter their income, hometown, race or gender—and now more than ever, the American people agree with this.

Abortion was one of the defining issues of the midterm elections. It was the number one issue for almost one-third of all voters according to exit polls, and every single ballot initiative addressing abortion was a resounding victory. (“It turns out women enjoy having human rights, and we vote,” Hillary Clinton tweeted.)

Continued: https://msmagazine.com/2023/01/09/biden-budget-2024-abortion-hyde-weldon-amendment/

U.S. Overturn of Roe Will Embolden Anti-Abortion Movements Abroad


The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which ruled that there is no U.S. constitutional right to abortion, will have ripple effects around the world, according to the International Center for Research on Women’s (ICRW) policy brief, “U.S. Foreign Policy Implications of Overturning Roe v. Wade.” While Dobbs did not change existing U.S. foreign policy regarding abortion, the brief argues that it will embolden anti-abortion movements abroad, contribute to global stigmatization of abortion, cause confusion for policy implementation and open the door for new restrictions—all of which will negatively impact the health, economic resources and well-being of women throughout the world. 

Dobbs is a reminder that current U.S. foreign aid restrictions “are not aligned with best health care practices nor consistent with human rights and bodily autonomy principles.”

Continued: https://msmagazine.com/2022/11/29/us-overturn-roe-v-wade-abortion-abroad-foreign-policy-helms-amendment-global-gag-rule/