By Miriam Berger
Jan. 28, 2021
Soon after he took office, President Donald Trump reinstated and expanded a policy known by its critics as the “global gag rule,” which bars U.S. funding for organizations abroad that perform abortions — or offer information about them.
On Thursday, a week into his presidency, Biden is expected to issue an executive order rescinding the policy.
December 3, 2020
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.
BY JESSIE HELLMANN
President-elect Joe Biden is expected to roll back several of the Trump administration’s changes to sexual and reproductive health programs, undoing a large portion of the president’s executive actions on abortion and women’s health.
Abortion rights and women’s health care advocates anticipate the Biden administration will act swiftly to reverse a myriad of Trump-era rules including ones that allow more employers to opt out of ObamaCare’s contraception mandate and ban the use of federal family planning dollars for domestic and foreign organizations that provide or promote abortions.
"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.
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.
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.
July 30, 2020
By Common Dreams
“Abortion care is healthcare and healthcare is a fundamental human right.”
Reproductive rights advocates on Wednesday cheered the introduction of the first-ever legislation to repeal the Helms Amendment, which has prevented millions of women across the globe from accessing safe abortion care.
Introduced by Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.), the “Abortion Is Health Care Everywhere Act” would rescind the 1973 amendment that blocks U.S. foreign aid funding for abortion and would help support comprehensive reproductive healthcare for women worldwide.
Though abortion restrictions are incredibly harmful and coercive in the U.S., they aren't a primary driver in the national decline in pregnancy terminations.
July 29, 2020
By Zara Ahmed, associate director of federal issues for the Guttmacher Institute
Anti-abortion advocates working to criminalize abortion in the United States and abroad will always be stymied by a crucial fact: People everywhere want, need and find ways to get abortions.
I observed this firsthand while working as a public health adviser in Asia, Africa and Latin America, and now new research from the Guttmacher Institute demonstrates just how misguided and dangerous it is to try to limit abortion access. The data shows that abortion rates are roughly the same in countries where abortion is broadly legal and in countries where it isn't. And abortion rates are actually four times higher in low-income countries where abortion is prohibited than in high-income countries where it is broadly legal.
Women in the poorest countries were nearly three times as likely to face unintended pregnancies as those in the wealthiest countries, revealing inequities in access to sexual and reproductive health care
23 Jul 2020
Neetu Chandra Sharma
NEW DELHI: Almost half of pregnancies between 2015 and 2019, worldwide, were unintended, according to a study published in the Lancet Global Health journal. Abortion rates were the highest in low-income countries with most legal restrictions to abortion care, the study pointed out.
The study was a collaboration of Guttmacher Institute and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), UNICEF, World Health Organization (WHO) and World Bank Special Programme of Research, Development and Research Training in Human Reproduction.
EXPERT VIEWS: How coronavirus is affecting abortion access
What experts from sexual health organisations and rights groups are saying about how COVID-19 is affecting sexual healthcare - and what should be done about it
by Sonia Elks | @SoniaElks | Thomson Reuters Foundation
Sunday, 5 April 2020
Women from Nepal to the United States are struggling to get abortions during the COVID-19 outbreak as lockdowns and medical shortages create barriers to care.
Sexual health organisations and women's rights groups have called on authorities to recognise access to abortion as a human right that must be protected during the pandemic.