Before abortion was legal in parts of Mexico, an extensive “accompaniment” system grew to help women safely terminate pregnancies on their own. Its organizers are now moving abortion-inducing medication across the border and helping replicate the system in the United States.
BY ALEXA URA AND GRETA DÍAZ GONZÁLEZ VÁZQUEZ
AUG. 4, 2022
MONTERREY, Mexico — Hi, I’m four weeks pregnant. Eight weeks. Six weeks.
The stream of pings and messages through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and WhatsApp reach Sandra Cardona Alanís at her home in this mountainous region of northern Mexico. She is an acompañante and a founder of Necesito Abortar México, a volunteer network that has helped thousands of people across Mexico access abortion, usually at home, by providing medication and support.
“Green Tide” Reaches Mexico as Oaxaca Decriminalizes Abortion
Oaxaca's monumental decision last week to decriminalize abortion is part of a larger "Green Tide" movement across Latin America.
October 3, 2019
The chambers of the state legislature in Oaxaca, Mexico, exploded with shouts of joy and rage September 25 as the region voted to decriminalize first-trimester abortions in a 24-10 vote. In the gallery, Catholic protesters chanted, “Assassins! Assassins!” while awaiting the vote. But when the decision was announced, feminist activists, clad in the green bandanas that have become the symbol of the Latin American pro-abortion movement, broke out in shouts of “Latin America will be entirely feminist.”
The vote exemplified the division between Mexicos deep Catholic, traditionally anti-abortion roots and its growing feminist movements. This tension was on full display in the chambers. Feminist activist Patricia Matus was one of the women celebrating in the legislature when the vote was announced. “The environment was horrible,” she said, describing pro-life demonstrators holding mass outside the state building, a verbal argument between male and female representatives that nearly delayed the vote, and shouting in the gallery.
Mexico’s Exciting Supreme Court Win for Women and Girls’ Access to Abortion
“This sets a precedent for the whole country. This gives us hope and empowers victims of rape because they know now that the court is on their side.”
May 14, 2018
Marimar* was 17 years old when she was raped and impregnated by her attacker. She reported the crime to the authorities in Morelos, Mexico where she lived and requested an abortion. The prosecutor’s office sent her to the hospital. Although abortion is legal in the case of rape in Mexico, the bioethics committee at Cuernavaca General Hospital where she sought help kept her in the hospital for two weeks, eventually denying her an abortion.
In 2016 Fernanda* was raped by an acquaintance and became pregnant. She requested access to an abortion, several times, from the health services of Oaxaca. The hospital was on strike and did not do anything but acknowledge receipt of her requests. Fernanda, like Marimar, was denied access to abortion care.