Trump’s Proposal to Further Expand Global Gag Rule Amid Pandemic Would Cut Off Healthcare Access to Millions, Rights Groups Warn

"Study after study—including from the State Department—has demonstrated that this neocolonialist policy has inflicted a crushing blow to healthcare access for people around the world."

by Julia Conley, staff writer, Common Dreams
Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Reproductive rights advocates on Tuesday warned that a newly proposed expansion of the anti-choice global gag rule will put millions at even greater risk of being unable to access healthcare including abortion care.

The U.S. State Department on Monday entered into the Federal Register a proposed policy change which would refuse global health aid through federal government contracts to foreign healthcare groups that provide abortion care or counseling.

Continued: https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/09/15/trumps-proposal-further-expand-global-gag-rule-amid-pandemic-would-cut-healthcare


Trump administration wants to expand international rule limiting abortion access

By Caroline Kelly, CNN
Mon September 14, 2020

(CNN)The Trump administration is pushing to expand its ban on funding for foreign nonprofits that perform or promote abortions, a move that critics say could further restrict health care access around the world.

In a move that will please President Donald Trump's base, the Department of Defense, the General Services Administration and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration published the proposed rule on Monday to extend the "Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance" policy, which already encompasses global health grants and cooperative agreements, to apply to contracts. The rule already applies to the State Department, Health and Human Services, the Department of Defense and the US Agency for International Development.

Continued: https://www.cnn.com/2020/09/14/politics/trump-administration-expand-international-abortion-rule/index.html


Meeting Women’s Modern Contraceptive Needs Could Yield Dramatic Benefit

September 9, 2020
By Deekshita Ramanarayanan

“Achieving true progress on sexual and reproductive health and rights requires a comprehensive approach and a commitment to tackling deeply entrenched inequities and injustices of which marginalized communities continue to bear the brunt,” said Dr. Herminia Palacio, President and CEO of the Guttmacher Institute. She spoke at a recent Wilson Center event where speakers analyzed findings from the Guttmacher Institute on the state of sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) globally.

The current COVID-19 pandemic threatens to roll back progress made towards SRHR.  “A growing body of evidence shows that the pandemic is already limiting access to sexual and reproductive health care worldwide, especially in low- and middle- income countries,” said Sarah Barnes, Project Director of the Maternal Health Initiative at the Wilson Center. These impacts go unrecognized because they are indirect results of health system disruption rather than the direct impact of a virus, said Zara Ahmed, Associate Director of Federal Issues at the Guttmacher Institute.

Continued: https://www.newsecuritybeat.org/2020/09/meeting-womens-modern-contraceptive-yield-dramatic-benefit/


Nigeria – Unsafe Abortion: Abolish GGR policy, stakeholders tell Donald Trump

AUGUST 25, 2020
By Anayo Okoli

Stakeholders in the campaign for improved women’s health in Nigeria and the world at large have decried the negative impact of the Mexico City Policy, introduced by President Donald Trump in 2016, on the wellbeing of mothers and children.

Making the call in Owerri, Imo State, during a zonal training workshop organised for media practitioners by Ipas Nigeria, participants said the policy has denied millions access to family planning and other reproductive health services.

Continued: https://www.vanguardngr.com/2020/08/unsafe-abortion-abolish-ggr-policy-stakeholders-tell-donald-trump/   


International abortion rule led to lapsed health aid in some African countries, report shows

By Caroline Kelly, CNN
Thu August 20, 2020

(CNN) A State Department review of the Trump administration's policy to bar funding for foreign nonprofits that perform or promote abortions found it has also affected efforts to treat tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS and to deliver nutritional assistance, among other programs, and has had significant impact in sub-Saharan Africa.

The review, published Tuesday, looks at the impact of the Trump administration's 2017 decision to reinstate the "Mexico City Policy" -- which had previously impacted only family planning assistance -- and extend it to all applicable US global health funding under the "Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance" policy.

Continued: https://www.cnn.com/2020/08/20/politics/abortion-global-rule-usaid-state-department/index.html


South Africa – Abortion is a regular medical procedure, so why do we need a law for it?

With abortion services becoming available through telemedicine and self-managed abortions increasingly gaining traction globally, the relevance and legality of abortion law should be questioned as women demand reproductive justice, and feminists get organising.

By Marion Stevens
14 August 2020

Abortion has always been legal in South Africa, a fact which may surprise many people. The colonial government introduced Roman-Dutch law, which allowed abortions to take place under certain conditions.

The Abortion and Sterilisation Act 2 of 1975 reserved access to abortion for white women, while increasing control over black women’s bodies – all within a population control framework. Under this act, approximately 1,000 white women accessed abortion every year, while the number of black women seeking abortions was not even recorded.

Continued: https://www.dailymaverick.co.za/article/2020-08-14-abortion-is-a-regular-medical-procedure-so-why-do-we-need-a-law-for-it/


NIGERIA – Workshop identifies harmful impacts of Global Gag Rule on developing nations

By Sam Oditah
Aug. 13, 2020

Dr Abiola Akiyode-Afolabi, a facilitator at an Ipas-organised workshop for journalists, says the US Global Gag Rule (GGR) has the potential to increase the rate of unsafe abortions in Nigeria and other developing nations across the world.

Akiyode-Afolabi’s said this on Thursday, while delivering a lecture on the “Exceptions in the GGR and its implications for Women and Girls in Nigeria” at a three-day workshop in Owerri.

Continued: https://naija247news.com/2020/08/13/workshop-identifies-harmful-impacts-of-global-gag-rule-on-developing-nations/#.Xzg5xjV7lPY


Nigeria – Abortion: Seeking exceptions to the Global Gag Rule

By The Rainbow
Aug 13, 2020

Nana, 14, wakes up petrified. It is 5:30 a.m. She was supposed to be up by 4:00 a.m., but was deep asleep and did not hear her angry aunt howling for hot water to bath with.

Though scared, she slowly and quietly walks into the kitchen, greeted her aunt, but the response was discomforting.

“Are you just waking up?'' Mrs. Alfred growled. “I am sorry,'' Nana muttered, shaking.

Continued: https://www.thenigerianvoice.com/news/290739/abortion-seeking-exceptions-to-the-global-gag-rule.html


Nigeria – Rape cases: Using reproductive health advocacy to stem the tide

By Bridget Chiedu Onochie, Abuja
09 August 2020 

In the wake of incessant cases of rape across the country, experts in reproductive health and rights have urged Nigerian media to embark on enlightenment campaign that will address high death rates arising from unsafe abortions.

The call was made recently at a three-day media capacity building workshop on women’s reproductive health and rights.

Continued: https://guardian.ng/features/gender-politics/rape-cases-using-reproductive-health-advocacy-to-stem-the-tide/


Nigeria urged to review abortion laws

By Ojoma Akor
Aug 3, 2020

Experts have called for a review of the restrictive abortion laws in Nigeria to protect women’s sexual and reproductive health and rights.

They made the call at the weekend during a training for journalists on the Global Gag Rule and women’s sexual and reproductive health and rights in Keffi, Nasarawa state.

Continued: https://www.dailytrust.com.ng/nigeria-urged-to-review-abortion-laws.html