‘US policies have restricted access to comprehensive and often lifesaving, reproductive healthcare.’
Anu Kumar and Patty Skuster, Ipas
15 October 2020
At this moment in US political history, Americans have a chance to rid the United States of its contradictory, confusing, and ideologically driven approach to reproductive health around the world.
The United States is the largest donor to global health and humanitarian assistance. But for decades it has been a case study in contradictions when it comes to aid and foreign policy, and in no area is this more evident than reproductive health and rights, particularly abortion.
The president has given fringe anti-abortion groups unprecedented influence.
OCTOBER 8, 2020
By NEHA WADEKAR
On a rainy morning in May 2019, Dr. John Nyamu was attending to patients on the cluttered first floor of an office building in downtown Nairobi when he heard raucous shouts from down the street. A caravan of protesters was winding toward him, a few hundred people teeming in the streets, bellowing through loudspeakers, and stopping traffic.
As the crowd reached his building, Nyamu, a well-known gynecologist who performs abortions in a private clinic, peered through his window at the protesters below to make out what they were saying. It turns out they were targeting him. “Abortion is murder! Abortion must go! Nyamu must go!” Some held signs with photos of mutilated fetuses. Others clutched baby-size cardboard coffins with crosses on them.
BY MICHELLE ONELLO, OPINION CONTRIBUTOR
The Trump administration has been executing a coordinated attack on what it sees as a critical public health issue. Unfortunately, the offensive is not targeting the COVID-19 pandemic, which has infected over six million people and claimed almost 200,000 lives in the US. Instead, the campaign has its sights set on women’s sexual health and reproductive rights, especially abortion. With the recent death of Supreme Court, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg threatening the fate of Roe v. Wade, the security of abortion rights has never been more precarious.
The administration’s brazen anti-abortion agenda includes not only well-publicized executive actions such as the expansions of the global and domestic gag rules, “conscience” exemptions to the Affordable Care Act’s contraceptive mandate, and the packing of courts with anti-abortion judges.
Experts Condemn States’ Efforts to Restrict Access to Abortion Care
UN human rights experts have declared that efforts by U.S. states to restrict access to abortion care during the COVID-19 crisis are violations of human rights.
The UN Working Group on Discrimination Against Women and Girls, together with the UN special rapporteur on right to health and the UN special rapporteur on violence against women, asserted in a statement that eight U.S. states—Texas, Oklahoma, Alabama, Iowa, Ohio, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Tennessee—“with a long history of restrictive practices against abortion, seem to have been manipulating the crisis to severely restrict women’s reproductive rights.”
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.
Reproductive justice is about much more than the freedom to choose to terminate a pregnancy or not – it challenges systems of oppression and discrimination and calls for a focused action plan for law reform.
By Tlaleng Mofokeng
14 August 2020
Dignity, bodily integrity, equality, safety and security, and health – including reproductive health – are human rights.
States must work to ensure that all people, regardless of gender, age, immigration or documentation status, geography or class, are able to access life-affirming and comprehensive healthcare. No circumstances or interventions should lead to discrimination, obstruction of access to abortion, or complications or death due to unsafe procedures.
Across federal agencies, the Trump administration is seeding the government with ideologues meant to advance hard-line policies.
By Colum Lynch, Robbie Gramer
July 14, 2020
The Trump White House has added another political loyalist and anti-abortion advocate to its roster of political hires at America’s premier international development agency, expanding the role and influence of the religious right in shaping U.S. priorities on global health and development, U.S. officials told Foreign Policy.
Patrina Mosley, who has been named advisor to the director of the Center of Excellence on Democracy, Human Rights, and Governance at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), is an outspoken anti-abortion advocate who recently accused the United Nations and the World Health Organization (WHO) of using the coronavirus pandemic to promote abortions—a claim the U.N. calls patently false.
United States: Authorities manipulating COVID-19 crisis to restrict access to abortion, say UN experts
Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)
May 27, 2020
GENEVA (27 May 2020) – UN experts* said today that some US states appear to be manipulating the COVID-19 crisis to curb access to essential abortion care.
The UN Working Group on Discrimination against Women and Girls said COVID-19 emergency orders suspending procedures not deemed immediately medically necessary had been used by states such as Texas, Oklahoma, Alabama, Iowa, Ohio, Arkansas, Louisiana and Tennessee to restrict access to abortion.
Another Egregious Attack on Reproductive Health by Trump Administration
Undermining access to reproductive health services during COVID-19 is cruel and detrimental to women’s health and well-being.
by Anu Kumar
The Trump Administration’s latest attempt to roll back reproductive rights and deny essential health care is yet another step toward realizing their extreme anti-rights agenda.
In a letter to the United Nations (U.N.), John Barsa, the acting administrator for the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), has asked for all references to sexual and reproductive health to be removed from the UN’s Global Humanitarian Response Plan (Global HRP).
U.S. rejects WHO coronavirus resolution's language on abortion
Stephanie Nebehay, Reuters
May 19, 2020
GENEVA — The United States rejected language about reproductive healthcare and intellectual property rights in a World Health Organization resolution on the coronavirus pandemic on Tuesday, hours after President Donald Trump threatened to quit the body.
Washington did not block the consensus adoption of the text, which calls for a review into the global response to the crisis and which diplomats had striven to pass without a vote.