Open Letter to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and heads of UN agencies

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17 August 2016

Open Letter to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and heads of UN agencies:

Ms Helen Clark, Administrator, UN Development Programme
Ms Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director, UN Women
Dr Margaret Chan, Director General, World Health Organization
Dr Babatunde Osotimehin, Executive Director, UN Population Fund
Mr Anthony Lake, Executive Director, UN Children’s Fund
Ms Irina Bokova, Director General, UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization Mr Michel Sidibé, Executive Director, UNAIDS

Re: Making International Safe Abortion Day, 28 September an official UN Day in 2016


Dear Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and heads of UN agencies,
We, the undersigned, are writing to support the proposal of the International Campaign for Women’s Right to Safe Abortion that you declare 28 September, International Safe Abortion Day, an official international UN Day.

The date 28 September was declared an international day of action for the decriminalization of abortion in 1990 by the women’s health movement and has been celebrated annually ever since. In 2012, it was celebrated in 53 countries: 10 African countries, 8 Asia-Pacific countries, 14 European countries, 15 Latin American/Caribbean countries, 2 Middle Eastern countries, and 2 North American countries. In 2013, 2014 and 2015, the number of countries in Africa and Asia holding activities grew, and some nine regional and international NGOs also participated.

In 2015, the Ministries of Health in three countries – Democratic Republic of Congo, Nepal and France – joined with national NGOs to celebrate the Day of Action. Dozens of groups internationally participated in a global tweetathon in 2015, which reached almost half a million people. Moreover, national news media have begun covering these activities in a growing number of countries, interviewing and drawing prominent national figures into the discussion. This year, we expect participation to be bigger than ever.

Activities for 28 September have included reports, articles, interviews on radio and TV, videos, marches, rallies, demonstrations, public meetings, discussion days, street theatre, flashmobs, surveys, opinion polls, art exhibitions, film showings, and music evenings. Activities aimed to have a longer-term impact have included campaigns for abortion law reform, clarification of the law and/or implementation of existing law, calls for increased access to safe abortion methods and services, training of providers, and efforts to obtain the release of women and abortion providers who are in prison. The outreach and impact of these activities at national and international level has grown substantially.

The call for safe abortion is in line with a number of international inter-governmental commitments, which began with the ICPD Programme of Action in 1994, Beijing Women’s Conference Platform for Action 1995, and have continued with regional agreements such as the Convención de Belém do Pará in 1996 and the Maputo Protocol of 2005, all of which have

recognised that unsafe abortion is a serious public health problem and that abortions need to be made safe.

In the past 5-10 years, a growing number of UN human rights bodies – including CEDAW, the Committee against Torture, the Committee on the Rights of the Child, the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, the Committee on Civil and Political Rights, the UN High Commissioner on Human Rights, the UN Working Group on the issue of discrimination against women in law and practice (UN Working Group), and the African Commission for Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR) – have called for abortion to be made safe and on a growing list of grounds, also legal. In January 2016, ACHPR called for the decriminalisation of abortion across Africa and in April 2016 the UN Working Group also called on all States to “discontinue the use of criminal law to punish woman for ending a pregnancy”.

There are major public health reasons why we are asking you to take this stand too. The annual number of abortions worldwide has increased from 50·4 million (1990-94) to 56·3 million (2010-14) because of population growth. Abortion is one of the safest medical procedures. Yet half of all abortions internationally are still unsafe, making the need for concerted action urgent.

Women are still suffering and dying from complications of unsafe abortion. Globally, deaths from unsafe abortion were estimated at 43,684 in 2013, accounting for 14.9% of all maternal deaths. Since ICPD 1994, in fact, almost 1 million women have died from unsafe abortions. These deaths were almost all unnecessary and avoidable.

Post-abortion care for complications of unsafe abortion was provided to 6.9 million women in developing regions in 2012, costing health systems an estimated US$ 232 million. Thus, post- abortion care in a situation of continuing illegality of abortion has proven since 1994 not to be an answer.

The human rights issues are also compelling. Women and/or abortion providers are being prosecuted for abortion in: Argentina, Brazil, Ecuador, El Salvador, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Dubai, Kenya, Malawi, Malaysia, Mexico, Morocco, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Nepal, Peru, Rwanda, Senegal, Spain, Tanzania, Thailand, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, and USA. Yet, as many as one in three women globally has an abortion in her lifetime. We are not criminals. None of us should be prosecuted for something that is a central fact of being a woman.

We therefore call on you, as UN agencies whose work touches on women’s health and rights in so many ways, to send a strong signal to the international community and to all our governments, with a simple but highly symbolic statement of support for safe abortion, by agreeing to make International Safe Abortion Day, 28 September, an official UN day.


Signatories International

– Marge Berer, International Coordinator, International Campaign for Women’s Right to Safe Abortion, Lima, Peru & London, UK

– Beverly Winikoff, Gynuity Health Projects, New York NY, USA
– Kinga Jelinska, Director, Women Help Women, Netherlands
– Manuelle Hurwitz, Senior Adviser, International Planned Parenthood Federation, London, UK – John D Hetherington, President and CEO, Ipas, Chapel Hill, NC, USA
– Françoise Girard, President, International Women’s Health Coalition, New York, USA
– Dick van der Tak, Executive Director, Global Doctors for Choice, USA

– Marie Stopes International, London, UK
– Katja Iversen, President/Chief Executive Officer, Women Deliver, USA

– Rebecca Gomperts, Director, Marlies Schellekens, Medical Supervisor, Women on Web, Netherlands

– Kathryn Mimno MD, MPH, Senior Technical Advisor I for Reproductive Health and Rights, Pathfinder International, USA

– Lois V Backus, MPH, Executive Director, Medical Students for Choice, USA (199 medical schools in chapters in 31 countries)

– Kesaya Baba, Chair–New Zealand, Youth Coalition for Sexual and Reproductive Rights

– Kathy Melville, Executive Director, Women’s Global Network for Reproductive Rights, Philippines

– Michele Ernsting, RNW Media l Head of Sexual Health and Rights Programme, Love Matters | Kenya | India | Latin America | Egypt | China

– Pablo Luis Cubero Ferradal, Dirección Regional America Latina, Femisana Women ́s Clinic – Women’s Health & Progress, Mexico; Clínica Dator – Partner Line, Madrid, Spain; Clínica Actur – Unidad Aragonesa de Salud, Zaragoza, Spain; Clínica Los Arcos – Clínicas Extremeñas Asociadas, Badajoz, Spain; Clínica Dos Arcos – Samer Ames, Lisboa, Portugal

– Joni van de Sand, MenEngage Alliance, Global Coordinator, Netherlands

– Susana Chavez, Executive Director, Promsex, and Coordinator, Campaign against Unsafe Abortion in Latin America, Peru


– Teresa Lanza Monje, Regional Coordinator, Red Latinoamericana de Católicas por el Derecho a Decidir, Argentina

– Richard Parker, Founder and Co-Chair, Sexuality Policy Watch, Brazil – Marta María Blandón, Ipas Centroamerica, Managua, Nicaragua

– Blanca Y Torres, MEd, Program Officer – Latin America Regional Office, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, USA

– Suchitra Dalvie, Director, and Sarah Jane Biton, Youth Champion Organization, Asia Safe Abortion Partnership, India

– Alexandra Johns, Advocacy and Communications Officer, Asia Pacific Alliance for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights, Thailand

– Gessen C Rocas, Director for Strategic Partnership, Advocacy and External Affairs, International Planned Parenthood Federation, East, South East Asia and Oceania Region, Malaysia

– Sattara Hattirat, Coordinator, International Lesbian & Gay Association (ILGA) Asia, Hong Kong

– Sarah Soysa, Sexual and Reproductive Health Coordinator for Asia, Doctors of the World

Sri Lanka

– Marta Szozak, Astra Central and Eastern European Women’ s Network for Sexual and Reproductive Rights and Health, Poland

– Malgorzata Kot, ASTRA Youth Coordinator, ASTRA Youth, Central and Eastern Europe, Poland

– Anamaria Suciu, Coordinator, Youth Sexual Awareness for Europe, IPPF European Network, Belgium

– Iustina Ionescu, Director of Programs, Euroregional Center for Public Initiatives, Romania – Ana Rizescu, Coordinator, YouAct – European Youth Network on SRHR, UK

– Estelle Wagner, International Advocacy Coordinator, International Planned Parenthood Federation, Western Hemisphere Region, USA

– Espérance Ntirampeba, Présidente, SFBLSP Burundi “Association des droits de la femme”, Burundi


– Peter Nguafac Temate Fongeh, Coordinator, Network for Health Rights in Cameroon (NEHRIC), Cameroon

– Amb. Dr. Eunice Brookman-Amissah, Special Advisor to the Ipas President on African Affairs, Ipas, Ghana

– Joseph Senyo Kwashie, Executive Director, Community and Family Aid Foundation, Ghana – Isaac Kwabena Kakpeibe, Executive Director, Tim Africa Aid Ghana (TAAG), Ghana
– Dintie Tayiru Sule, Executive Director, SAVE-Ghana, Ghana
– Albert Obbuyi, Executive Director, Center for the Study of Adolescence, Nairobi, Kenya

– Dr Jesse Njunguru, Marie Stopes Kenya, Kenya

– Ephraim Chimwaza, Executive Director, Centre for Social Concern and Development, Malawi

– Pearson Malisau, African Youth Safe Abortion Alliance, Malawi

– Nelly Mwakasungula, Project Officer, Center for Girls and Interaction, Malawi

– Godfrey Kammunda, Director, Ladder for Rural Development, Malawi

– Chrispine Sibande, Country Director, Ipas Malawi, Lilongwe, Malawi

– Sally Griffin, Director, International Centre for Reproductive Health, Mozambique

– Sybil Nmezi, Executive Director, Generation Initiative For Women and Youth Network, Nigeria

– Stella Peters, Coordinator, Federated Women Alliance, Nigeria

– Musa Ansumana Soko, Executive Coordinator, Youth Partnership for Peace and Development, Sierra Leone

– Brima K Muana, Associate II – Policy, Ipas, Sierra Leone
– Christopher M Briama, National Coordinator, Humanist Watch Salone, Sierra Leone

– David J Allieu, National Coordinator, Civil Society Advocacy Network on Climate Change and the Environment – Sierra Leone, Freetown, Sierra Leone

– Fodie PO Kamara, Policy & Advocacy Manager, Marie Stopes Sierra Leone, Sierra Leone

– Kabonde Gbamue Kamaa, Executive Director, Grassroots Community Development Agency, Sierra Leone

– Geraldine Fraser-Moleketi, Special Envoy on Gender of African Development Bank, former Director of the UN Development Programme’s Democratic Governance Group, former Minister of Public Service and Administration and former Minister of Welfare and Population Development of South Africa

– Roland Edgar Mhlanga MB ChB, MPH, FCOG (South Africa), Global Doctors for Choice (SA), FIGO Initiative for Safe Abortion (South African Society of Gynaecologists and Obstetricians – SASOG), Obstetrician-Gynaecologist, Department of Health, South Africa

– Dr Susan Goldstein, Executive Programmes, Soul City Institute, South Africa

– Dr Tlaleng Mofokeng MBChB, Vice Chairperson, Sexual Health & Reproductive Justice Coalition, South Africa

– Marion Stevens, Coordinator, WISH Associates Sexual and Reproductive Justice Coalition, South Africa

– Barbara Klugman, Director, Barbara Klugman Concepts PTY Ltd, South Africa

– Marijke Alblas, Independent Medical Consultant SRHR, Abortion provider and trainer, South Africa

– Kristen Daskilewicz, Researcher, Gender, Health & Justice Research Unit, University of Cape Town, South Africa

– Tracey Feltham-King, Research Associate, Critical Studies in Sexualities and Reproduction (Rhodes University), and Researcher in Social Psychology, University of Fort Hare, South Africa

– Donald Kasongi, Executive Director, Governance Links Tanzania, Tanzania

– Joy Asasira, Program Manager, Research, Documentation and Advocacy, Center for Health, Human Rights and Development, Uganda

– Yiga Musa, Team leader, Community Health Rights Network, Uganda

– Collins Saabwe, Program Manager, Youth Plus Policy Network, Uganda

– Peter Ghaali, Executive Director, Support Needy Lovely Centre, Uganda

– Caroline Aruho, Program Assistant (Health Policy Advocacy), Coalition for Health Promotion and Social Development, Kampala, Uganda

– Kyomya Macklean, Alliance of Women to Advocate for Change, Uganda – Norah Tuhaise, Clinician, Marie Stopes Uganda, Uganda

– Pester Siraha, Director for Grants and External Relations, Population Services Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe

– Margaret Kirkby, Women’s Abortion Action Campaign, Sydney, Australia


– Anna Kerr, Principal Solicitor, Feminist Legal Clinic, New South Wales, Australia

– Lisa Clancy, Socialist Women for Justice, Australia

– Fran Hayes, Feminist Collective, Sydney, Australia

– Fran Hayes, Coalition for Women’s Refuges, Sydney, Australia

– Bernice Gray, Director, Pregnancy Advisory Centre, Adelaide, Australia

– Brooke Calo, Senior Social Worker, Pregnancy Advisory Centre, Central Adelaide LHN, Australia

– Jo Wainer AM, Associate Professor, Melbourne, Australia
– Trish Hayes, Lecturer in Social Work, Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia

– Barbara Baird, Associate Professor, Discipline of Women’s Studies, School of Social and Policy Studies, Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia

– Professor Judith Dwyer, Director of Research, Department of Health Care Management, School of Medicine, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia

– Dr Prudence Flowers, Discipline of History, School of History and International Relations, Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia

– Shireen P Huq, Honorary Coordinator, Women’s Health Rights Advocacy Partnership Project, Naripokkho, Bangladesh

– Sabina Faiz Rashid, Professor, PhD, Dean, James P Grant School of Public Health, BRAC University, Dhaka, Bangladesh

– Kaosar Afsana, Director, BRAC Health, Nutrition & Population, BRAC, Bangladesh
– Banasree Mitra Neogi, Senior Program Coordinator, Manusher Jonno Foundation, Bangladesh

– Dr Lutfa Akther, Programme Coordinator, RH Step: Reproductive Health Services and Education Programme, Bangladesh

– S M Shaikat, Executive Director, SERAC, Bangladesh
– Robert Paul, Director, Community Life, Dhaka, Bangladesh – Dr SM Shahidullah, Country Director, Ipas Bangladesh

– Dr Nozer Sheriar, Scientific Chair, XXII FIGO World Conference and member, Technical Advisory Group, WHO South East Asia Region, India

– Prof Suneeta Mittal, MD, FRCOG(ae), FICOG, FAMS, FICMCH, FIMSA,FICLS, Director & Head, Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology, Fortis Memorial Research Institute, Gurgaon, India

– Vinoj Manning, Executive Director, Ipas Development Foundation, India

– TK Sundari Ravindran, Secretary, Rural Women’s Social Education Centre, Tamil Nadu, India

– Dr Sharad D Iyengar, Chief Executive, Action Research & Training for Health (ARTH), India

– Shiv Khare, Chief Executive Officer, Foundation for Leadership Initiatives, India

– Dr Abhijit Das, Director, and Shakti Jamdade, Consultant, Centre for Health and Social Justice, India

– Ms Sneha Giridhari, Senior Programme Officer, SWISSAID, India

– Anand Pawar, Executive Director, SAMYAK, Pune, India

– Dr Monisha Behal, Executive Director, North East Network, Guwahati, Assam, India

– Subhash Mendhapurkar, Sutra, Jagjit Nagar, India

– Bimla Chandrasekhar, Director, Ekta Resource Centre for Women, India

– Chaitali Bhatia, CREA, India

– Deepa Bajaj, Chief Executive, Child Survival India, India

– Murari Mohan Choudhury, Executive Director, NEEDS, India

– Gunjan Sharma, Sexpert and Content Advisor SRHR, Radio Netherlands – Love Matters India

– Gouri Choudhury, Director, Action India, India

– K C Santhosh Kumar, Director, Media Action with Youth and Adolescents Trust, Thrissur, Kerala, India

– Neharika Mahajan, Communication and Resource Mobilization Officer, Save the Children India, Delhi Chapter, India

– MenEngage Alliance: Boys and Men for Gender Justice, India

– Community of Practitioners on Accountability and Social Action in Health, India

– Dr Meeta Singh, Dignity of Girl Child Foundation, India

– Dr Shishir Chandra, Programme Manager, SAHAYOG, India

– Isita Roy Chakraborty, Coordinator-Programme Development, Lutheran World Service India Trust, India

– Urmi Ray, Associate Director, New Light, Kolkata, India

– Dolli Dash. Secretary, Project Swarajya, Bakharabad, Odisha, India

– Dr Arvinder Singh Nagpal, President, Guru Angad Dev Sewa Society, Punjab, India

– Dr Rumeli Das, Assistant Director, Child In Need Institute, West Bengal, India

– Dr. Radhika Shrivastava Adholeya, Consultant (Quality Assurance), EngenderHealth, India Country office, New Delhi, India

– Bidyutprava Mohanty, Secretary, Maa Durga Rural Women’s Udyog, Cuttack, Odisha State, India

– Swarupa Rani, Secretary, SAKAR, Khurda, Odisha State, India

– Dr Souvik Pyne, Senior Program Assistant, Indian Institute of Public Health, Bhubaneswar, India

– Kirti Sundar Sahu, Research Associate, Public Health Foundation of India, India

– Amita Pitre, Independent Consultant, Public Health and Gender Justice; Research Scholar at Tata Institute of Social Sciences, India

– Raja Mohamed, Meera Foundation, Tamil Nadu, India
– Ashok Mandre, President, Satyakam Jankalyan Samiti, Madhya Pradesh, India – Bijayalaxmi Rautaray, Secretary, Sahayog, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India

– Dr Rashmi Ardey, Technical Specialist, India
– Saru Shilpakar, Youth Champion, Asia Safe Abortion Partnership (ASAP), India

– Dr Shishir Kumar Biswas, Dist. RMNCHA Consultant, National Health Mission, , Baloda Bazar (CG), India

– Dr Sandeep Mahapatra, Research Associate, Public Health Foundation of India, India

– Dr Shreeporna Bhattacharya, Research Associate, Indian Institute of Public Health- Bhubaneswar, Public Health Foundation of India, India

– Dr Milind R Shah, MD, DGO, DFP, FICOG, Vice President of FOGSI (2011); Past Chairman-Rural Obstetrics Committee of FOGSI (2004-08); Prof & HOD, Dept of OBGYN, Gandhi Natha H M College; Vice President of ISOPARB (2014-16), President (2016-18); Governing Council Member of Indian College of OBGYN, India

– VS Chandrashekar, Country Director, Marie Stopes India, New Delhi, India

– Vivek Dwivedi, Manager Operations, Marie Stopes India, Lucknow, India

– Dr Anil Nehra, Consultant Surgeon & Team Leader, Marie Stopes India, Jaipur, India

– Dr Nikhat Alam, State Clinical Services Manager, Marie Stopes India, Bihar, India

– Bhavana Milind Jadhav, Student, M Phil in social work, Karve Institute of Social Services, Pune, India

– Inna Hudaya, Director, eight staff and information hotline counsellors, Samsara, Indonesia – NH Handayani, Editor-in-Chief, GueTau, Jakarta, Indonesia

– Gama Triono, Executive Director, Indonesian Planned Parenthood Association, Jogjakarta Chapter, Indonesia

– Fita Rizki Utami, Indonesia
– Mirawati, Director, Institute for Women’s Human Rights, Indonesia

– Shera Rindra Mayangputri, Campaign and Social Media Manager, Aliansi Laki-laki Baru, Indonesia

– Sumie Asatori, Executive Director, Space Allies, Japan

– Fumi Suzuki, Executive Director, Allies Law Office, Japan

– Kumi Tsukahara, Part-time Lecturer, Japan

– Sharafdzhon Boborakhimov, International Coordinator in Charge of Advocacy & Partnership, Y-PEER Network, Kyrgyz Republic

– Eshiev Asylbek, Jalal-Abad State University, Director, International Relations Department, and PhD, Associate Professor, Head of the Public Foundation “Equal Rights and Opportunities”, Kyrgyz Republic

– Dr Thant Aung Phyo, Medical Officer, Royal Private Hospital and White Medical Care, Myanmar

– Anand Tamang, Founder Chairperson and Director, and Dr Mahesh Puri, Associate Director, Center for Research on Environment Health and Population Activities (CREHPA), Kathmandu, Nepal

– Kapil Kafle, Executive Director, Institute of Human Rights Communication, Jwagal, Lalitpur, Nepal

– Bidhya Basnet, Program Coordinator, Midwifery Society of Nepal, Nepal
– Shanta Laxmi Shrestha, Chairperson, Beyond Beijing Committee-Nepal, Kathmandu, Nepal – Puja Karki, Youth Champion Advocacy Network Nepal, Nepal
– Dirgha Raj Shrestha, Acting Country Director, Ipas Nepal
– MenEngage Alliance, Nepal
– Najma Sheikh, Executive Director, Peace Foundation, Pakistan

– Manak Matiyani, Executive Director, The YP Foundation, Pakistan

– Dr. Ghulam Shabbir, Country Director, Ipas Pakistan

– Imtiaz Kamal, Midwife, Pakistan

– Muqadas Aabroo, Executive Director, Women Social Organization, Pakistan

– Naureen Lalani, Youth Champion and Specialist, Monitoring and Evaluation, Greenstar Social Marketing, Pakistan

– Farzana Aslam, Volunteer, Asia Safe Abortion Partnership, Pakistan
– Ana Maria R Nemenzo, National Coordinator, WomanHealth, Philippines

– Dave Isidore E Plopinio, Council Member / Policy Volunteer, Family Planning Organization of the Philippines, Camarines Sur Chapter, Philippines

– Danica Shahana Magtubo, Asia Safe Abortion Partnership Youth Champion, Philippines – Paisan Pan, Thailand

– Kritaya Archavanitkul, Coordinator, CHOICE Network, and Adjunct Professor, Institute for Population and Social Research, Mahidol University, Thailand

– Supecha Baotip, Co-Founder, TamTang Group, Thailand

– Mr Nithiwat Saengruang, Nanoi Hospital, Nan, Thailand

– Nedine Kachornnamsong, Co-Founder, QueerMango, Thailand

– Tussnai Kantayaporn, Path2Health Foundation, Thailand

– Jetsada Taesombat, Co-Founder/Executive Director, Thai Transgender Alliance, Thailand

– Supharpha Ongsakul, Deputy Director, Holt Sahathai Foundation, Thailand

– Rungravee Chompoonutprapa, Nurse, Population Development Association, Thailand

– Sulaiporn Chonwilai, Board Member, Sexuality Studies Association, Mahidol University, Thailand

– Varaporn Chamsanit, Manager, Women’s Wellbeing and Gender Justice Program, Thailand – Indigenous Women’s Network of Thailand

– Chatchalawan Muangjan, Legal Resource Person, Empower Foundation, Thailand
– Maliwan Senawong, Researcher, Women’s Studies Center, Chiang Mai University, Thailand – Kalaya Chularatakorn, Activist, CSOs for Gender Equality, Thailand

– Jittima Phanutecha, Coordinator, Women’s Health Advocacy Foundation, Thailand
– Damrong Tanee, President, Network of Positive Persons, (Laem Ngob Hospital), Thailand
– Naowarat Khankamnoed, President, Network of Positive Persons, (Trad Hospital), Thailand – Daranee Thongsiri, Co-Founder, Buku Classroom, Thailand
– Phakwilai Sahunalu, Coordinator, Srikhoraphum Youth, Thailand
– Matcha Phorn-in, Director, SANGSAN ANAKOT YAWACHON, Thailand
– Natakamon Siwasilp, Lawyer, Togetherness for Equality and Action (TEA), Thailand
– Anoporn Khruataeng, Editor,, Thailand
– Saranya Boonpeng, President, Thai Positive Women Network, Thailand
– Kanjana Thalaengkit, Coordinator, Thai NGO Coalition on AIDS, Thailand
– Oranong Chanasit, Assistant to Director, Life Skills Development Foundation, Thailand
– Nikorn Chimkong, President, Bangkok Rainbow Foundation, Thailand
– Supensri Phungkoksoong, Manager, Social Equality Promotion Foundation, Thailand
– Sularrat Apibansee, President, Network of Positive Persons (Khlong Yai Hospital), Thailand -.Chatchai Anan, President, Network of Positive Persons (Ta Kang Hospital), Thailand
– Veerawan Wanna, Co-Founder, Sangsan Anakot Yawachon, Thailand

– Anticha Sangchai, Lecturer, Prince of Sonkhla University, Thailand – Jaruwan Satalalai, Accountant, FAN, Thailand
– Paisarn Likhitpreechakul, LGBTIQ activist, Thailand
– Niwat Suwanpatthana, Researcher, Thailand

– Vipar Daomanee, Former Lecturer, Thammasat University, Thailand

– Ronnapoom Samakkeekarom, Lecturer, Thammasat University, Thailand

– Maliwan Senawong, Researcher, Women’s Studies Center, Chiang Mai University, Thailand

– Tikomporn Trakulkittipaisal, Social Worker, Makarak Hospital, Thailand

– Chetsada Padaplal, Community Relations Staffperson, Watershade Development Institute, Thailand

– Nisarat Jongsuwan, Author,, Thailand

– Hoang Tu Anh, Director, Center for Creative Initiatives in Health and Population, Vietnam

– Dinh Thi Phuong Nga, Program Coordinator, Vietnam Public Health Association, Vietnam

– Mai Thi Viet Thang, Co-Founder, Center for Supporting Community Development Initiatives, Vietnam

– Do Thi Hong Nga, Country Director, Concept Foundation, Vietnam

– Nguyen Hong Linh, Office Manager, VietHealth – Sustainablie Health Development Center, Vietnam

– Dame Margaret Sparrow, Past President, Abortion Law Reform Association of New Zealand – Terry Bellamak, President, Abortion Law Reform Association of New Zealand
– Dr Janet Downs, Abortion Provider, Dunedin Hospital, New Zealand

– Lida Grbova, Executive Director, Albanian Center for Population and Development, Albania


– Hrachuhi Yeghiazaryan, Project Assistant, Women’s Rights Center, Armenia

– Lida Minasyan, Chief Executive Officer, Society Without Violence NGO, Armenia

– Petra Bayr, Member of Parliament, Spokesperson for Global Development, Social Democratic Party, Austria

– Angela Tunkel, Executive Director, Austrian Family Planning Association, Austria – Mrs Sudaba Shiraliyeva, Director, Centre Women and Modern World, Azerbaijan

– Jean-Jacques Amy, Professor Emeritus, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Hon. Editor-in-Chief, European Journal of Contraception and Reproductive Health Care; Former President, Belgian Society of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Belgium

– Thérèse Delvaux, MD, MPH, PhD, Senior Researcher, Public Health Department, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp, Belgium

– Sara De Meyer, International Centre for Reproductive Health, Ghent University, Belgium

– Emilie Saey, Coordinatrice, Fédération des Centres Pluralistes de Planning Familial, Bruxelles


– Emina Bošnjak, Programme Manager, Sarajevo Open Centre, Bosnia & Herzegovina

– Nejra Gadžo, Youth Sexual Awareness for Europe, Bosnia and Herzegovina

– Veronique Sehier, Carine Favier, Co-Présidentes, Le Planning Familial (MFPF), France

– Dr Virginie Rozée, Post-Doctoral Researcher, Institut National d’Etudes Démographiques, Paris, France

– Jacob Dellacqua, Writer, France
– Jeff Hearn, Professor, Hanken School of Economics, Finland

– Nino Tsuleiskiri, Executive Director, Association HERA XXI, Tbilisi, Georgia
– Stephanie Lord, Spokesperson, Choice Ireland, Ireland
– Jen Mayne, Margaret Mayne, Ernest Mayne, Ireland
– Vicky Christian, Member, Campaign for Abortion Law Modernisation (CALM), Isle of Man – Mirella Parachini, MD, San Filippo Neri Hospital, Rome, Italy

– Kristina Plecic Bekarova, Vesna Matevska, Program Coordinators, First Family Center, Health Education and Research Association-HERA, Macedonia

– Rodica Comandent, Executive Director, Reproductive Health Training Center, Chisinau, Moldova

– Nanneke Nix, Director Partnership Development, Simavi, Netherlands

– Ariane Osman, Engagement and Communications Strategist, RNW Media – Love Matters Programme, Netherlands

– Yvonne Bogaarts, Manager Advocacy, and Maeva Bonjour, Technical Advisor International Programmes, Rutgers, Netherlands

– Gro Lindstad, Executive Director, FOKUS – Forum for Women and Development, Norway

– Jorunn Friis Reset, Agnete Strøm, International Coordinator, Women’s Front of Norway, Norway

– Tor-Hugne Olsen, Executive Director, Sex og Politikk/IPPF, Norway
– Marit Lieng, President, Norwegian Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Norway

– Mette Løkeland, MD, PhD, Medical Director, Abortion Registry, National Institute of Public Health, Norway

– Krystyna Kacpura, Executive Director, Federation for Women and Family Planning, Poland
– Duarte Vilar, Diretor Executivo, Associação para o Planeamento da Família, Lisbon, Portugal

– Margarida Medina Martins, President of the Executive Direction, Associação Mulheres contra a Violência, Lisbon, Portugal

– Ana Rita Brito, International Projects Coordinator, Akto – Human Rights and Democracy, Portugal

– Plataforma Portuguesa para os Direitos das Mulheres, Portugal

– ComuniDária, Portugal

– Associação Plano i , Portugal

– EOS – Associação de Estudos, Cooperação e Desenvolvimento, Portugal

– Associação Portuguesa pelos Direitos das Mulheres na Gravidez e Parto, Portugal

– Irina Costache, Project Manager, Asociatia pentru Libertate si Egalitate de Gen (Association for Liberty and Gender Equality), Romania

– Daniela Draghici, Member in charge of advocacy, Society for Feminist Analyses, Romania

– Carmen Suraianu, Executive Director, Society for Education on Contraception and Sexuality, Romania

– Sandra Johansson, Coordinadora, Programa Derechos de las Mujeres, Alianza por la Solidaridad, Spain

– Filomena Ruggiero, Senior Advocacy Officer, Federación de Planificación Familiar Estatal, Spain

– ACAI (Association of Accredited Abortion Clinics), Spain

– Sílvia Aldavert Garcia, Coordinació Associació de Planificació Familiar de Catalunya i Balears, Catalunya, Spain

– Filomena Ruggiero, Senior Advocacy Officer, Federación Planificación Familiar Estatal, Spain

– Nausica Castelló, Coordinadora Programa Preinfant: Acompañamiento a la maternidad vulnerable, Asociación Bienestar y Desarrollo, Barcelona, Spain

– Beatriu Masià Masià, Barcelona, Spain

– Meritxell Vegué Gisbert, Directora de servició de atención a mujeres e hij@s que han sufrido violencia machista, Associación Bienestar y Familia, Barcelona, Spain

– Eulàlia Mata i Miralles, Comunicació, SIDA Studi, Catalonia, Spain

– Stuart Halford, Senior Representative to the United Nations in Geneva, Sexual Rights Initiative, Switzerland

– Shirin Heidari, Director and Editor, Reproductive Health Matters, Switzerland

– Hanna Lindley-Jones, SAAF Project Coordinator, Safe Abortion Action Fund, UK

– Lisa Hallgarten, Chair, Voice for Choice Coalition, UK

– Mara Clarke, Founder and Director, Katherine Ann Clough, Trustee/Treasurer, Abortion Support Network, UK

– Jane Fisher, Director, Antenatal Results and Choices (ARC), UK

– Ann Henderson, Assistant Secretary, Scottish Trades Union Congress, Glasgow, Scotland, UK

– Anne McVicker, Director, Women’s Resource and Development Agency, Belfast, N Ireland, UK

– Goretti Horgan, Lecturer in Social Policy, School of Crim. Politics & Social Policy, Ulster University, Belfast, N Ireland, UK

– Kerry Abel, Chair, Abortion Rights, London, UK
– Natika H Halil, Chief Executive, FPA (Family Planning Association), London, UK – Ann Furedi, Chief Executive, bpas, London, UK
– Prof Sally Sheldon, Lawyers for Choice, UK
– Andrew Copson, Chief Executive, British Humanist Association, UK

– Mr Peter Greenhouse, MA FRCOG FFSRH, Consultant in Sexual Health, Bristol Sexual Health Centre; Vice-President, International Society for Infectious Diseases in Obstetrics & Gynaecology, UK

– Dr Susanna Rance, Senior Research Fellow, Institute for Health and Human Development, University of East London, London, UK

– Dr Jayne Kavanagh, Ethics and Law Lead, Principal Clinical Teaching Fellow, University College London Medical School, UK

– Oona Campbell, Professor, Epidemiology and Reproductive Health, Faculty of Epidemiology and Population Health, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, UK

– Upeka de Silva, Student in medical ethics and law, UK

– Pam Wortley, Retired General Practitioner, Sunderland, UK

– Carol Bradford, Independent Consultant in Sexual and Reproductive Health, London, UK

– Dr Maggie Eisner, retired General Practitioner; and GP Training Programme Director, British Medical Association, UK

– Simon Ross, Chief Executive, Population Matters, UK
– Ernestina Coast, Associate Professor, London School of Economics, UK
– Erika Garrett, Full-time mother and Champion of Choice for BPAS, UK
– Dr Anne MC Webb, Consultant in Sexual and Reproductive Health (retired), UK – Rayah Feldman, activist for migrants’ rights, UK
– Dr Himansu Basu, Rotary International, UK

Latin America/Caribbean

– Silvina Ramos, Agustina Ramon Michel, Mariana Romero. Area Salud, Economía y Sociedad, CEDES (Centro de Estudios de Estado y Sociedad), Argentina

– Carolina Martínez, Campaña Nacional por el Derecho al Aborto Legal, Seguro y Gratuito, Buenos Aires, Argentina

– Raúl Mercer, Coordinator, Program of Social Sciences and Health, FLACSO (Latin American School of Social Sciences), Argentina

– Elena Meyer. Medica General, Ministerio De Salud de la Provincia de Jujuy, Argentina – Marina Bouza, Trabajadora social del Cesac 12 Hospital, Pirovano, Argentina

– Emanuel Castellani, Medico General del Centro de Salud Cordones del Chapelco, San Martín de los Andes, Neuquen, Argentina

– Luis Carlos Suarez, Médico, Hospital Nuestra Sra del Pilar El Talar, Provincia de Jujuy, Argentina

– Dra Daniela S Epstein, Servicio de Medicina Familiar y Comunitaria, Coordinadora Medica Ctro Belgrano 1 y 2 (Juramento y V del Pino), Hospital Italiano de Buenos Aires, Argentina

– Florencia Grande, Hospital Italiano de Buenos Aires, Argentina
– Esteban Rubinstein, MD, Staff member, Hospital Italiano de Buenos Aires, Argentina

– Fernando D’Ippolito, Médico Residente de Medicina General, Hospital Penna, Ciudad Autónoma de Buenos Aires, Argentina

– Dra Cecilia Rosés, Especialista en Ginecología y Obstetricia, Hospital de Fátima, Posadas- Misiones, Argentina

– Osvaldo Santiago, Médico Obstetra, Hospital Interzonal General de Agudos “Evita”-Lanús, Argentina

– Natalia Gonzalez, Trabajadora social, CESAC 4- Area programatica del Hospital Santojanni, Ciudad Autonoma de Buenos Aires, Argentina

– Clara Chouhy, Hospital Piñero, Argentina

– Dr Carlos Román Daud, Resident, Internal Medicine, Hospital Argerich, Federal Capital, Argentina

– Maria Sofia Ortiz, Médica, Argentina

– Analia Paola Cerqueira, Médica de Familia, Hospital Italiano de Buenos Aires, Argentina

– Denise Ingrid Cytryn, Hospital Italiano de Buenos Aires, Argentina

– Andrea Berra, Facultad de Psicología Universidad de Buenos Aires, FUSA, Argentina

– Sebastian Ariel Crespo, Centro de Atención Primaria de la Salud Numero 7, Municipio de San Martin, Provincia de Buenos Aires, Argentina

– Tania Carola Nava Burgoa, Directora Ejecutiva, Católicas por el Derecho a Decidir, Bolivia

– Dra. Malena Morales Lara, Directora de País, y Lisbeth Vogensen, Social Media Manager, Ipas Bolivia

– Alexia Escóbar Vásquez, Coordinadora General, Fundación Siesar, Bolivia

– Guadalupe Pérez, Colectivo Rebeldía, Bolivia

– Silvia Salinas Mulder, Independent consultant, La Paz, Bolivia

– Rubia Abs da Cruz, Co-Coordenadora Nacional, Comité Latino Americano e do Caribe pelos Direitos da Mulher (CLADEM), Brazil

– Rosangela Talib, Católicas pelo Direito de Decidir do Brazil – Beatriz Galli, Ipas Brasil, Brazil

– Sonia Corrêa, Pesquisadora Associada da ABIA (Associação Brasileira Interdisciplinar de AIDS); Co-Coordenadora do Observatório de Sexualidade e Política, Sexuality Policy Watch, Brazil

– Jacqueline Pitanguy, Founder and Executive Director, CEPIA (Cidadania Estudo Pesquisa Informação Ação), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

– Leila Adesse, Director, Afirmative Action for Rights and Health, Brazil

– Benedito Medrado, Professor and Researcher, Federal University of Pernambuco (UFPE), Brazil

– Jorge Lyra, Professor and Researcher, Federal University of Pernambuco (UFPE), Brazil
– Mariana Azevedo, Coordinator, Instituto PAPAI, Brazil
– Verónica Díaz Ramos, Directora, Católicas por el Derecho a Decidir, Chile
– Silvia Plana Subirana, Coordinadora, La Mesa por la Vida y la Salud de las Mujeres, Colombia – Monica Roa, Independent consultant, Colombia

– Cristina Villarreal Velásquez, Directora Ejecutiva, Fundación Oriéntame/Fundación ESAR, Colombia

– María Mercedes Vivas P, Coordinadora, Grupo Médico por el Derecho a Decidir/Global Doctors for Choice, Colombia

– Sandra Mazo, Coordinadora, Católicas por el Derecho a Decidir, Colombia

– Larissa Arroyo Navarrete, Presidenta, Asociación Ciudadana ACCEDER, Costa Rica

– Ana Carcedo, Presidenta, Centro Feminista de Informacion y Accion, CEFEMINA, Costa Rica

– Pamela Cunningham, Presidenta, Colectiva por el Derecho a Decidir, Costa Rica

– Paquita Cruz, Independent, Costa Rica

– Gabriela Arguedas Ramírez, Profesora asociada, Escuela de Filosofía, Investigadora, Centro de Investigación en Estudios de la Mujer, Universidad de Costa Rica

– Ana Lorena Camacho De la O, Socióloga feminista, Investigadora, Escuela de Sociología, Universidad Nacional, Costa Rica

– Frente Ecuatoriano por la Defensa de los Derechos Sexuales y Derechos Reproductivos/ Fundación Desafio, Ecuador

– Gabriela Gamboa, Colectiva Salud Mujeres, Ecuador

– Mary Cabrera, Directora Ejecutiva, María Isabel Cordero, Subdirección Técnica, Fundación SENDAS, Ecuador

– Jóvenes voceras y voceros en Derechos Sexuales y Derechos Reproductivos, El Salvador

– Patricia Isabel Olmedo Alas, Administradora General, Centro Arte para La Paz, El Salvador

– Verónica Salazar Beltrán, Asociación Colectiva de Mujeres para el Desarrollo Local, El Salvador

– Griselda Mata, Presidenta, Asociación Católicas por el Derecho a Decidir, El Salvador

– Vilma Abigail Portillo Duarte, Activista feminista, Enfermera, Honduras, where all abortions are penalised

– Regina Tamés Noriega, Directora, Grupo de Información en Reproducción Elegida, AC, México – Balance Promoción para el Desarrollo y Juventud, México
– Oriana Lopez Uribe, Fondo de Aborto para la Justicia Social MARIA, México
– Raffaella Schiavon, Coordinator, Ipas, México

– Ana María Camarillo Zavala, Director, Centro de Atención Integral a la Pareja AC, Mexico City, Mexico

– María Consuelo Mejía, Directora, Católicas por el Derecho a Decidir, México – Tínima Rubalcaba, Marie Stopes International, México

– María Eugenia Romero, Directora, Equidad de Género, Ciudadanía, Trabajo y Familia/Red por los Derechos Sexuales y Reproductivos en México, México

– Susana Lerner Sigal, Profesora/Investigatora, Centro de Estudios Demográficos, Urbanos y Ambientales, El Colegio de México, México

– Marta Lamas, Professor, Gender Studies Program, National Autonomous University of Mexico, México

– María Luisa Sánchez-Fuentes, Deputy Director, Femisana Women’s Clinic, México – Susana Chavez, Director Executiva, Promsex, Lima, Perú
– María de Fátima Valdivia del Rio, Línea Aborto Información Segura, Perú
– Católicas por el Derecho a Decidir, Perú

– Marta B Rondon, Past President, International Association Women’s Mental Health, Maryland, USA; and Consultant Psychiatrist, Peruvian Institute for Maternal and Perinatal Health (former Maternidad de Lima), Lima, Peru

– Nirvana González Rosa, Movimiento Amplio de Mujeres de Puerto Rico, Puerto Rico – Iniciativas Sanitarias, Montevideo, Uruguay
– Mujer y Salud en Uruguay (MYSU), Uruguay

– Dalia Abd El-Hameed, Gender and Women’s Rights Officer, Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights, Egypt

Middle East/Mediterranean

– Dr Issam Bennis, Medical Researcher, National School of Public Health, Rabat, Morocco

– Selma Hajri, Présidente, Groupe Tawhida Bencheik – Pour la Recherche & Action en santé des femmes, Tunisia

– Rasha Ahmad, Junior Program Officer, International Planned Parenthood Federation/Arab World Regional Office, Tunisia

– Prof Dr Ayse Akin, Baskent University, Faculty of Medicine, Public Health Department; Director of Woman-Child Health and Family Planning Research and Implementation Center, Turkey

– Rebecca J Cook, CM, JD, JSD, FRSC, Professor of Law Emerita, Faculty of Law, University of Toronto, Canada

North America

– Dorothy Shaw, OC, MBChB, FRCSC, Professor, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada

– Joyce Arthur, Executive Director, Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada
– Alixandra Bacon, RM, President, Midwives Association of British Columbia, Canada

– Geoffrey Cundiff, MD, FACOG, FACS, FRCSC Professor & Head, Dr Victor Gomel Professor of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, University of British Columbia, Canada

– Amanda Evans, Member, Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada; RPhT Candidate, Ontario College of Pharmacists, Canada

– Rosemary Ganley, Catholics for Choice, Canada

– Mary Annis, Former Coordinator, Brandon Women’s Resource Centre, Winnipeg, Canada

– Patricia LaRue, Executive Director, Clinique des femmes de l’Outaouais, Canada

– Helena Palmqvist, Clinic Operations Manager (Provincial), Options for Sexual Health, Canada

– Dr Shannon Dea, Associate Professor, Department of Philosophy, University of Waterloo, Canada

– Prof Lianne McTavish, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
– Dianne Varga, student, Kelowna, Canada
– Jean-François Rostoker, Women’s Health Center, Regina General Hospital, Regina, SK, Canada – Rebecca Brown, Director of Global Advocacy, Center for Reproductive Rights, USA

– Jon O’Brien, President, Catholics for Choice, USA

– Lynn M Paltrow, Executive Director, National Advocates for Pregnant Women, USA

– Kelly Blanchard, President, Ibis Reproductive Health, Cambridge MA, USA

– Lisa Maldonado, Executive Director, Reproductive Health Access Project, New York NY, USA

– Beirne Roose-Snyder, JD, Director of Public Policy, Center for Health and Gender Equity, Washington DC, USA

– Matthew Reeves, MD MPH FACOG, Medical Director, National Abortion Federation, Washington, DC, USA

– John Townsend, Vice President and Director, Reproductive Health Program, Population Council, New York, USA

– Leslie R Wolfe, President, Center for Women Policy Studies, USA – NARAL Pro-Choice America, USA
– Debra Hauser, President, Advocates for Youth, USA
– Religious Institute, USA

– Karen Thurston, Board Member, Abortion Conversation Project; Volunteer, Feminist Women’s Health Center; ARC-Southeast: Accessing Reproductive Care; and the Sea Change Program, USA

– Angel M Foster, DPhil, MD, AM, Principal & Co-Founder, Cambridge Reproductive Health Consultants, Cambridge, MA, USA

– Frances Kissling, President, Center for Health, Ethics and Social Policy, USA – Aileen Gleizer, Policy Manager, Marie Stopes USA, USA
– Gary Barker, President & CEO, Promundo-US, USA
– Jocelyn Lehrer, ScD, Founder/Director, Men’s Story Project, USA

– Laxman Belbase, Global Networks Manager, MenEngage Alliance, Washington, DC, USA

– Rosalind Petchesky, Distinguished Professor Emerita of Political Science, Hunter College & the Graduate Center, City University of New York, USA

– Charlotte Bunch, Founding Director, Center for Women’s Global Leadership, Rutgers University, USA

– Prof Therese McGinn, Heilbrunn Department of Population and Family Health, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, USA

– Terry McGovern, Professor, Columbia University Medical Center, Mailman School of Public Health, New York, USA

– Marlene Gerber Fried, Professor of Philosophy, Faculty Director, Civil Liberties and Public Policy Program, Hampshire College, USA

– Liz Maguire, Global Reproductive Health and Rights Advisor, Former President and CEO of Ipas, Former Director of USAID’s Office of Population and Reproductive Health, USA

– Iqbal H Shah, Principal Research Scientist, Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health, Boston, USA

– Joan Kaufman, ScD, Lecturer in Global Health and Social Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, USA

– James Trussell, Senior Research Demographer, Princeton University, USA

– Elizabeth Janiak, ScD, Research Fellow, Harvard Medical School, USA

– Dr Bayla Ostrach, PhD, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA, USA

– Paul D Blumenthal, MD, MPH, Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Stanford University School of Medicine, USA

– Aaron Katz, Principal Lecturer of Health Services, Global Health (adjunct) and Law (adjunct), University of Washington School of Public Health, Seattle, USA

– Abigail Aiken, Assistant Professor of Public Affairs, University of Texas at Austin, USA

– Rob Okun, Editor and Publisher, Voice Male Magazine, Member of MenEngage Alliance, USA

– Barbara Crane, Consultant, USA

– Susan Yanow, Reproductive Health Consultant, USA

– Anissa Helie, Professor of History, John Jay College, USA/Algeria

– Isabel Ray, Texas, United States

– Linda Noel Schierman, Singer-Songwriter, Washington State, USA – I emphatically support this!

– Caitlin A Nelligan, MPH Candidate, Gillings School of Global Public Health, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, USA

In total – 430 signatures from 73 countries

17 international organizations and networks
16 regional organizations and networks
39 organizations, groups and individuals from 12 countries in Africa
146 organizations, groups and individuals from 16 countries in Asia/Pacific
80 organizations, groups and individuals from 22 countries in Europe
73 organizations, groups and individuals from 13 countries in Latin America/Caribbean 5 organizations and individuals from 4 countries in the Middle East/Mediterranean
54 organizations, groups and individuals from 2 countries in North America