Welcoming positive change in US foreign policy

The incoming Biden administration is set to adopt policies that promote equality and human rights around the world, says Katherine Zappone

Katherine Zappone
TUE, 15 DEC, 2020

One of many reasons to welcome Donald Trump’s departure from the White House is that a deeply damaging and harmful piece of foreign policy is expected to exit with him.

The so-called ‘Global Gag Rule’, a policy which prohibits US aid to foreign nongovernmental organisations who refer to or advocate abortion services, has cost the lives of tens of thousands of women and girls in the poorer regions of the world during the past four years.

Continued: https://www.irishexaminer.com/opinion/commentanalysis/arid-40190628.html


A Biden Promise About Overseas Abortion Funding Could Prove Difficult To Implement

December 3, 2020
Nurith Aizenman

Among the promises that President elect-Biden is expected to fulfill immediately upon taking office: lifting a ban that President Trump imposed on U.S. foreign aid dollars related to abortion.

Specifically, the ban prohibits foreign aid funding for privately-run overseas-based groups that "perform or actively promote abortion as a method of family planning" for women. Among the activities that are barred: providing referrals for abortion or offering advice or medical information on the procedure. And this is prohibited even if the group funds their communications around abortions with non-U.S. sources.

Continued: https://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsoda/2020/12/03/933052858/a-biden-promise-about-overseas-abortion-funding-could-prove-difficult-to-impleme


Abortion provider changes name over controversial figure’s views on eugenics

By Bianka Farmakis
Nov 16, 2020

A leading global abortion provider has changed it's name in the UK in an effort to distance itself from Marie Stopes, claiming her views on eugenics are in "stark contrast" to the charity's values.

The provider, Marie Stopes International, will be known as MSI Reproductive Choices, severing its connection to the woman who paved the way for family planning.

While the move will occur Tuesday in the UK, the name change will ripple across the 37 countries the charity is located in world wide.

Continued: https://honey.nine.com.au/latest/marie-stopes-abortion-clinic-changes-name-over-eugenics-views/9255ba40-4a84-42a8-9651-6ce6c1831b37


Women struggle to access abortion as pandemic adds to hurdles in Europe

By Catarina Demony
NOVEMBER 16, 2020

LISBON (Reuters) - Helplines across Europe have reported higher demand for their services as the coronavirus pandemic adds to the hurdles many women face to access abortion.

While abortion is legal in most of Europe, some women have struggled to get appointments in public health systems overwhelmed by the pandemic. Others could not escape abusive partners because of lockdowns, non-governmental organisations and some women who chose to have an abortion told Reuters.

Continued: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-europe-abortion/women-struggle-to-access-abortion-as-pandemic-adds-to-hurdles-in-europe-idUSKBN27W11P


Abortion provider changes name over Marie Stopes eugenics link

Nov 16, 2020

A leading abortion provider has changed its name to break ties with Marie Stopes, the controversial birth control pioneer who believed in the creation of a super race.

Marie Stopes International, which provides contraception and abortions to women and girls in 37 countries, is now known as MSI Reproductive Choices.

Continued: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-54970977


Trump’s anti-abortion limits on foreign aid could have a lasting impact around the world

Joe Biden has pledged to reverse the anti-abortion restrictions on foreign aid. But many changes made in response to the ‘global gag rule’ already may be permanent.

Nov 11, 2020
Sarah Varney, Kaiser Health News 

In Ethiopia, health clinics for teenagers once supported by U.S. foreign aid closed down.

In Kenya, a decades-long effort to integrate HIV testing and family planning unraveled.

In Nepal, government workers who once traversed the Himalayas to spread information about reproductive health were halted.

Continued: https://chicago.suntimes.com/politics/2020/11/11/21559459/abortion-global-gag-rule-trump


In Europe and the US, abortion rights are under renewed threat

by Emma Reynolds, CNN
Sun November 1, 2020

(CNN)The Abortion Dream Team usually receives about 400 calls a month, from women seeking advice and information. Last week, the Polish advocacy group had 700 in the space of three days, according to team member Justyna Wydrzynska.

Some came from women who had just arrived at hospital to have abortions because of fetal defects -- only to be told to go home after Poland's highest court on October 22 imposed a near-total ban on abortion.

Continued: https://www.cnn.com/2020/11/01/europe/abortion-rights-poland-us-slovakia-intl/index.html


From the Global Gag Rule to the Geneva Consensus, women’s bodies bear the brunt

The U.S. continues to attack the reproductive rights of women globally, resulting in unintended pregnancies and unsafe abortions

by Banchiamlack Dessalegn | Marie Stopes International
Thursday, 29 October 2020

With the U.S. presidential elections just days away, it is hard to miss the growing efforts of the Trump administration to roll back reproductive rights. From the expanded Global Gag Rule, to Amy Coney Barrett’s supreme court confirmation and last week’s Geneva Consensus Declaration, with the U.S. administration asking countries to sign “that there is no international right to abortion”, the fight for reproductive rights and gender equality is far from over. 

At MSI, as a global provider of contraception, safe abortion and post-abortion care, we have seen the consequences of these efforts first-hand, with women’s lives, health and futures put at risk.

Continued: https://news.trust.org/item/20201029173203-kwt4j


More than 50% of all pregnancies in Ghana are unintended

Oct 28, 2020

Every year in Ghana 767,200 pregnancies, that is 53 per cent of all pregnancies were unintended.

Stakeholders in the health sector made a call on the government and non-governmental partners to reduce the burden of unsafe abortion by educating the public on the country’s abortion laws.

Continued: https://www.ghanabusinessnews.com/2020/10/28/more-than-50-of-all-pregnancies-in-ghana-are-unintended/


How The Pandemic Is Limiting Access To Abortion

Across the globe, travel restrictions, stay-at-home orders and shifting health care priorities have combined to make abortion an even more difficult procedure to obtain.

Hannah Steinkopf-Frank
2020-10-19

As hospitals around the globe direct their attention and resources toward helping COVID-19 patients, other medical needs are, inevitably, getting less attention. One of those is women's reproductive health and access, in particular, to abortion, as evidenced in a recent study by the advocacy group Marie Stopes International. In a recent report, the organization noted that between January and June, in 37 countries, nearly two million fewer women received abortions than in the same period last year.

• Travel restrictions and bans have had an impact as well, limiting options for women in places ranging from the United States to Poland, as they are unable to access abortions in other states or countries where it is considered an essential procedure.

Continued: https://worldcrunch.com/coronavirus/how-the-pandemic-is-limiting-access-to-abortion