COLOMBIA – Five powerful stories about access to sexual and reproductive rights

by Chicas Poderosas, 7 July 2021

“These stories tell how women and LGBTTQI+ people live their sexual and reproductive rights in rural or peripheral areas of Colombia, stories that have been made invisible and that this project sought to explore and, now, put on the agenda through collaborative journalism. They talk about the difficulties women in rural areas face in knowing and accessing contraceptive methods; the experiences of trans people who want to have an abortion; the relegated but fundamental profession of midwifery; about women who organise to know and demand their rights; and on the situation of sexual exploitation that Venezuelan migrants are going through.” [The texts on the website are in Spanish but you can translate them into English by right-clicking and click on Translate into English.]

Here are summaries of the two stories whose main theme is to do with abortion:

Todes abortamos We all aborted – Posted by Volcánicas

by: Valeria Cobo, Nathalia Acosta Salazar, Laura Rodríguez Salamanca, María Fernanda Morales, Nathalia Angarita

This digital report tells the life experience of Daniel, a trans man who was denied the right to terminate his pregnancy as a result of sexual violence in the context of the armed conflict in Colombia. From this story – which happened in Ocaña, Norte de Santander, eight years ago – the challenges of trans men, transmasculine and non-binary people to access the Voluntary Interruption of Pregnancy (IVE) in Colombia are explored. There are also three micro-stories about violence that trans men have faced in the department of Norte de Santander within the health system. Finally, a series of recommendations is included for trans people who need to access the voluntary interruption of pregnancy.

Las mujeres de Sumapaz y su derecho de decider (The women of Sumapaz and their right to decide)

Podcast (en español solamente), by Sandra Milena Reinoso Rodríguez, Diana Mildred Ladino Gama

The right to decide about our bodies and about motherhood in Colombia is partially guaranteed. The grounds model decriminalises abortion in three specific situations. However, the barriers to accessing an abortion in rural areas of the country are still very strong. This podcast tells the stories of women from the town of Sumapaz, in Bogotá, who sought an abortion.