New Zealand: Alranz, We are pro-truth

On 3 March, the head of ALRANZ, Terry Bellamak wrote: “Today is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent. It marks the beginning of the anti-choicers’ annual [40 day] protest outside hospitals and clinics where abortions are performed. “This year, ALRANZ will spend these 40 days celebrating truth. The protesters are well aware their efforts do not change the minds of those seeking care. Rather, it seems the protesters’ purpose is to increase the emotional cost … Continued

Northern Ireland: How would you respond to an anti-abortion campaign?

A Campaign member recently wrote: “I’m on Northern Ireland’s biggest talk radio programme tomorrow morning to respond to a campaign that has been launched here. Could anyone give me any advice on how to talk about how this idea stigmatises??” The campaign is called “Both lives matter”. It claims that “pro-life” (in the anti-abortion sense) does not mean “anti-women”. Here are some of the replies she received: Reply 1 (from the USA): This debate seems … Continued

Fake news in Malawi: anti-abortion language without the sugar coating

An article in February 2017 about celebrations by Banja La Mtsogolo of 30 years of providing reproductive health services in Malawi, reported that the group backed calls for legalisation of abortion in the country, arguing that many women are dying due to unsafe abortion. The comments section was dominated by Jesus is Lord. Here is what he and someone called Ichabod said: Jesus is Lord: “Abortion is murder. PERIOD! Banja La Mtsogolo are supporters of … Continued

USA: Creating billboards that empower Black women

Cherisse Scott is a reproductive justice activist in Tennessee, USA, where her work is to take on anti-choice billboards in public spaces and work with faith groups to bring comprehensive sex education to Tennessee schools in place of currently mandated abstinence-focused programmes. She describes her goal as “refocusing the dialogue about Black women’s reproductive health decisions back to the real conditions of our lives. Conditions which, if unmet, leave us vulnerable in many instances, with … Continued

Sweden: Where conscientious objection to abortion is not recognised in law

In Sweden, conscientious objection is not recognised in law. A Swedish midwife who refused to participate in abortions or prescribe contraceptives, which are part of the job description for midwives, was turned down for jobs in three clinics in the region of Joenkoeping in 2014. Her case was tried by Sweden’s discrimination ombudsman and appealed to the district court. Both ruled against her claims of discrimination in 2015. The district court ordered her to pay the authorities’ legal costs. She then appealed to the Labour Court.

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