Today is the Global Day of Action for Safe, Legal Abortion! The most important thing you can do today to commemorate this worldwide campaign is to sign our petition calling on global leaders to demand that governments fulfill their human rights obligations to women, including guaranteeing the right to safe, legal abortion. We need your voice!
Many of you will remember the story of Delma Rosa Gómez López, more famously known by her pseudonym in the news – “Amalia.” Her case received international attention in 2010 after she was denied treatment for her cancer because she was pregnant and lived in Nicaragua where abortion – or any medical procedure that could cause abortion – is banned in all circumstances. Delma Rosa ultimately died, leaving behind a daughter and husband who loved her.
This #Sept28, we honor the memory and raise up the voices of Delma Rosa and the thousands of other women in similar circumstances. Please watch this clip from the film A Quiet Inquisition, which features the only known film interview of Delma Rosa. This is her story in her words.
Too often abortion is considered a crime with heavy penalties, including imprisonment, for women and healthcare providers. We need your help urging the United States to join the nearly 60 countries around to world in standing up for global sexual and reproductive rights, including the right to safe, legal abortion.
Check out our video featuring global leaders who believe abortion is a right, not a crime.
Criminal abortion laws hurt women and their families.
Helena, who lives in extreme poverty with her young daughter, was raped and became pregnant. When she sought treatment at the hospital for the severe complications of her self-induced abortion, the doctor reported her to police. Because of the stigma surrounding abortion in Bolivia, Helena never told her family what happened; she explained her 8-month absence by saying she was away working in Argentina.
Read more about Helena and similar cases: www.ipas.org/abortionisnotacrime
In places where abortion is a crime, women who are young are at greater risk of resorting to unsafe abortion, and consequently being arrested.
In 2013, a 17-year-old student in Rwanda became pregnant and later took pills in her school bathroom to induce an abortion. The school administration discovered she was suffering abortion complications and reported her to police. Afraid her school would expel her, she didn’t report that she had become pregnant at age 17 (she was now 18), which would have legally exempt her from prosecution on grounds of statutory rape. She pleaded guilty and received a sentence of one year in prison.
In Nicaragua, where abortion is banned under all circumstances, physicians can no longer intervene if there is a pregnancy complication, even if it means saving a woman’s life. Watch this clip from the film “A Quiet Inquisition” in which a mother awaits the results of her daughter’s ultrasound. What would you do if your daughter was facing a life-threatening pregnancy?
When abortion is a crime, as it is in Argentina, health-care professionals are targeted by police for trying to help their patients.
When abortion is a crime, some health-care providers risk arrest in order to help women in need.
Analia was arrested and spent more than a year under threat of criminal prosecution because she had prescribed misoprostol—a medical drug recommended by the World Health Organization to end a pregnancy—to a pregnant 12-year-old girl who made it clear she intended to have an abortion at any cost.
Read more about Analia and similar cases: www.ipas.org/abortionisnotacrime