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(en) France, Alternative Libertaire AL #286 - IVG: A right (never) acquired (fr, it, pt)[machine translation]

Date Sun, 9 Sep 2018 09:21:42 +0300

Despite advances this year for the right to abortion in the world, many threats still weigh. Mobilization for access to France and in solidarity with women around the world must continue, especially on 28 September, International Day for the Right to Abortion. ---- This year has been rich on the issue of abortion. Two historically very restrictive European countries have finally legalized abortion: Ireland and Cyprus. In late May, a historic referendum in Ireland repealed the eighth amendment to the Irish constitution, the law previously punishing the practice of abortion for 14 years in prison. In this country, which is nevertheless very Catholic, 66% of the population (of all ages and social backgrounds) voted for the " yes ", thus marking a decline in the religious influence on society. Beyond the legalization of a practice that pushed women to go to Britain to abort in secret, it is generations and generations who have seen languages loose, taboos rise.

Two steps forward
If the conscience clause still allows doctors to refuse to practice abortion, it is hoped that this result marks a real change in mentalities that will prevent this new legalization remains a dead letter, as in some countries such as Italy where more than 80% of health workers refuse to practice abortions. In Cyprus, a law, originally presented in 2015, was finally passed after a woman was arrested for an abortion in a private clinic, as well as the doctor who had practiced it. This event had revived the debate in the country, and led to the unrestricted legalization of abortion until 12 weeks of pregnancy, despite pressure from the Orthodox Church.

In Latin America, despite an unprecedented movement, the reactionary bloc delayed the acquisition of this right. In Argentina, if the Chamber of Deputies voted for legalization, the Senate opposed it. In the face of the pope's negative pressure in the debate, hundreds of people left to be " renamed " August 18 in Buenos Aires. In Chile, abortion was decriminalized in 2017 for cases of rape, risk to the mother's life and viability of the fetus, and a bill was introduced on August 21 to advance this right. But the aggression of three protesters, stabbed on the sidelines of a demonstration for abortion, shows violent opposition. The debate has, however, been open throughout Latin America. In Brazil, despite strong reactionary opposition, the issue of the right to abortion outside the three clauses mentioned above has been raised and is being debated in the Supreme Court. Feminists do not intend to stop there, and mobilization is far from running out of steam.

Three steps back
Similarly, in Poland, feminist associations did not hesitate to call a strike in March to protest against a new bill to further restrict access to abortion, and they are thousands of women who went down to the streets to say that they refused to see their rights back any longer.

In countries where abortion is legal, access is not guaranteed. In many European countries, abortion is still paying off. Conscientious objection allows health professionals to refuse to perform abortions, and information is sometimes prohibited as in Germany.

And many obstacles
Compulsory medical appointments make the process more cumbersome, or even force many women out of legal deadlines, forcing them to have an abortion in countries with longer delays, such as Great Britain, Spain or the Netherlands. However, abortion abroad is very expensive, between the price charged for the operation, transportation, sometimes housing ... Women who practice, depending on their situation, can not all access to this solution. In Belgium, since 1990, a doctor has to certify a state of " distress "Of the mother, subjective assessment made by a professional who often does not know the situation of the person concerned. Minors under the age of 16 must often have the consent of their parents to abort, denying their right to dispose of their bodies. In France, it is the austerity policies that make access to abortion difficult. Thus, according to the family planning movement, more than a hundred IVG centers closed in 10 years, further accentuating inequalities. Indeed, territorial disparities do not allow access to all this right in good conditions, and further increase the risk of exceeding legal deadlines.

A real danger for all
In the absence of a legally recognized right to abortion, or in certain situations, such as excessive overruns, many women will be forced into solutions that often have dramatic consequences for their health. Thus, clandestine abortions can lead to haemorrhages, heavy infections, and leave irreversible gynecological sequelae. Deaths are not uncommon, especially for the most precarious women, and / or lacking access to quality medical care following the interruption. As many as 80,000 women die each year as a result of illegal abortion, as long as it is actually possible to quantify a hidden practice. Not to mention the social stigma that abortion may represent for some of them, banished by their entourage if that can be learned. These elements, if known, do not prevent the reactionaries from continuing to claim the prohibition of abortion. Thus, the movements prolife "invade the public space in order to spread their ideas, comparing abortion to a crime, or playing on the guilt of the women concerned and their relatives. In France, these groups were able to carry out a poster campaign in 2017, under the name " En Marche pour la vie ", or create a website presented as an information and support space in relation to the abortion in order to get their ideas across, especially to the women directly concerned who came to seek advice. The right to abortion, while it may seem certain for some, remains a struggle to be waged every day.

This is why we must mobilize in France and around the world: gathering on 28 September in Paris for the International Day for the Right to Abortion ; caravan of women on 9 September in Brussels ; and throughout the year to defend our rights in France, Europe, and around the world.

ElisA (AL Saint Denis), Flo (AL Lorient)

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