POLAND – The rapid degradation of the rule of law in Poland: what it means for women’s sexual and reproductive rights

This is a report conducted by the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) in Poland. Over the past three years, new attempts at further restricting women’s already very restrictive right to abortion, expanding the scope of the conscientious objection, and refusing to implement ECtHR rulings, have heightened to the point where it is currently almost impossible for women to undergo a legal and safe abortion in the country.

28 September Reports and Articles in the Media

International Safe Abortion Day 2018 received unprecedented attention from media around the world, from countries as diverse as New Zealand, Venezuela, Ghana, Zimbabwe and Croatia. Some countries, like Ireland, India and South Africa generated more media attention than others – and it’s important to flag that since we collected reports in English, but are missing reports in other languages. This is the second year that we have collected media reports on and about the 28 … Continued

EUROPE / EPF

Restoring the Natural Order”: The religious extremists’ vision to mobilize European societies against human rights on sexuality and reproduction by Neil Datta, EPF, April 2018   This book reveals how a Christian extremist group, Agenda Europe, from the US and Europe, have been organising, fundraising and strategising since 2013 to overturn existing laws on basic human rights related to sexuality and reproduction, including to criminalise same-sex relationships, partnerships and marriages; forbid divorce; ban homosexuals from … Continued

POLAND – Allies or opponents? Medical doctors in the debate on women’s right to abortion in Poland

Why don’t gynaecologists in Poland engage socially and politically in activities that could lead to liberalization of the abortion law? What should happen for this situation to change? These questions were a starting point for formulating the objectives of a project implemented by the Foundation of Equality and Emancipation STER. This report, based on focus group discussions with medical students and residents, members of women’s organisations and groups, and practising doctors, is offered as a … Continued

THE BALKANS – Falling population numbers cannot be reversed by restrictive policy on abortion

Enormous numbers of people are migrating away from the Balkans to seek work elsewhere due to poor salaries, working and living conditions. In Kosovo, for example, in the winter of 2014-15, 100,000 people left within weeks (7% of the total population) when it became possible to enter Serbia with an identity card, and many then went illegally across other borders. In western Bulgaria and southeast Serbia, whole regions are depopulating, as governments have been unable … Continued

POLAND – Widespread opposition and condemnation again stops fundamentalist politicians from punitive law reform

Fundamentalists, led by activist Kaja Godek forced the Social Policy and Family Committee of the Polish parliament to debate the repressive “Stop abortion” bill on 2 July 2018. This bill aimed to criminalise abortions on grounds of fetal impairment, which under the existing narrow law make up 95% of all legal abortions carried out in Polish hospitals. The decision to hold this debate was a surprise, because the Committee had previously said it would not deal … Continued

STATEMENT OF SOLIDARITY POLAND: Why does your government hate women so much?

To the Members of the Polish Sejm and the parliamentary clubs: The International Campaign for Women’s Right to Safe Abortion has nearly 1,300 members in 119 countries who support women’s right to safe abortion. On behalf of all the members of the Campaign, I am writing to urge you to drop this vicious, anti-women, anti-abortion bill. It will not stop abortions, it will not save babies who could not survive on their own no matter … Continued

EUROPE / SEXUALITY EDUCATION – The Current State of Sexuality Education in Cyprus, Georgia, Poland, Romania and the Netherlands: Insights from a Youth Perspective

Aiming to bring attention to the need for comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) and to empower and encourage young leaders to influence their national policies, CHOICE for Youth and Sexuality and YouAct initiated the “Europe for CSE” project, with support from ShareNet. Youth advocates from Cyprus, Georgia, Poland, Romania and the Netherlands joined forces, worked online and met in Amsterdam to set-up concrete advocacy plans at national level, including meetings with volunteers, round tables, online campaigns … Continued

POLAND – Polish abortion rights advocates reported to the police, but no charges were brought (yet)

Dear Abortion Friends, Some time ago we, the Abortion Dream Team (an informal group working on destigmatisation of abortion) and Kobiety w Sieci (community of women with abortion experience who run the online forum and support each other), found out that two anti-choice organizations had filed reports with the police accusing us of committing two kinds of crimes and asking them to press charges against us for our activities. One supposed crime they accused us … Continued

EUROPEAN COMMISSION & GENERAL COURT – The General Court confirms the decision of the European Commission not to submit a legislative proposal based on the citizens’ initiative ‘One of Us’

According to the Treaty on European Union, EU citizens, not fewer than one million from at least a quarter of all Member States, may take the initiative of inviting the Commission, within the framework of its powers, to propose to the EU legislature to adopt a legal act for the purpose of implementing the Treaties (‘European citizens’ initiative’). Before being able to begin collecting the requisite number of signatures, the organisers of the initiative must … Continued

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