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Politicians, Governments Should Protect Women’s Health, Legalize Abortion

The Guardian: Why do politicians still force women through unwanted pregnancies?
Dame Billie Miller, lawyer and politician in Barbados

“…When governments deny women access to safe and legal abortion, it does nothing to decrease the rate at which abortions occur. Instead, it leads to more injuries and deaths. In the absence of care, women resort to all kinds of methods to interrupt unintended pregnancies — unqualified health care providers, self-made drug concoctions, coat hangers — each more dangerous than the next. … [I]n 1983 … [the Barbados] parliament passed the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, allowing women throughout the country to access abortion services legally and safely. This victory made Barbados a regional pioneer, the first English-speaking Caribbean country to make abortion broadly legal … But the progress we’ve seen here has not been echoed elsewhere. Politicians around the world are promoting policies that force women through pregnancies they do not want to continue. … On International Day for Safe Abortion, we are reminded that saving women’s lives requires resistance and persistence…” (9/28).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.