Poland’s Constitutional Court Ruling On Abortion Represents Violation Of Women’s Human Rights, Head Of Family Planning Federation Writes In Opinion Piece

TIME: Poland’s Constitutional Court Has Effectively Banned Abortion, But We Will Not Stop Fighting For Our Fundamental Rights
Krystyna Kacpura, executive director of the Federation for Women and Family Planning in Poland

“Poland’s anti-abortion laws have always been among the most restrictive in Europe. Until this week the procedure was only permitted when the pregnancy posed a threat to the woman’s life, if there was a fatal fetal abnormality, or in cases rape or incest. However on Oct. 22 the country’s constitutional court ruled that a fatal fetal abnormality was not justification for terminating a pregnancy and violates the constitution. For the over 10 million women of reproductive age in Poland, this ruling effectively puts in place a complete ban on abortion. … The ruling is an outrageous violation of women’s human rights. … Making abortion illegal will not reduce the number of procedures, research shows. The ban only endangers women’s lives and health. Women without access to money and information, often from smaller towns and villages, will end their pregnancies in dangerous ways, on their own or by unsafe underground abortions. This is what we fear most. We are going to do everything we can to prevent this from happening and are in contact with foreign abortion clinics that are ready to to provide services to Polish women. If even one woman is harmed by an unsafe abortion, we will hold the Polish state accountable. … We will continue to protest, and we will fight to the end” (10/30).

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