Topic: Human Rights

When abortion is a crime

This two-page fact sheet is adapted from a 2013 Ipas report investigating the impact of criminal abortion laws on women, their families and health-care providers in three South American countries—Bolivia, Brazil and Argentina. 

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When abortion is a crime: Rwanda.

Rwanda reformed its abortion law in 2012, but legal barriers and cultural and religious stigma make it nearly impossible for women to get a safe, legal abortion. Women with unplanned or unwanted pregnancies resort to unsafe and illegal abortions—and Rwandan police unjustly harass, arrest, prosecute and imprison hundreds of women and girls on abortion or infanticide-related charges each year. This report, by Ipas and Great Lakes Initiative for Human Rights and Development, shares findings from interviews with women, judges, legal defense lawyers, and police officers, and calls on the Rwandan government to take steps to address this ongoing human rights violation.

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Making change happen: A review of progressive abortion policy change in Africa

An overview of progressive abortion policy changes and trends in Africa, primarily between 2010-2016. It outlines strategies in regional policy work by Ipas and partners and points to examples of positive policy change, such as national law reform, updated standards and guidelines, commitments by policymakers, and the integration of safe abortion into regional strategies and actions plans on sexual and reproductive health and rights.

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A practical guide for partnering with police to improve abortion access

This guide is a resource for advocates, trainers, project managers and technical advisors who design programs and workshops to engage police on abortion issues. Drawing on the work of Ipas and other organizations, it offers practical strategies for partnering with police to address stigmatized issues and promote public health, with a specific focus on abortion. It can be used both in settings where abortion is legal and accessible and in settings where it is highly restricted.

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How to protect abortion access during constitutional reform, June 2011

This toolkit is designed to help reproductive rights advocates participate in national constitutional reform processes. It looks at the potential consequences of constitutional protection of life at conception and outlines ways reproductive rights advocates can influence the constitutional reform process. It also may be useful for advocates facing constitutional amendments or engaging in litigation.

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When a health professional refuses: Legal and regulatory limits on conscientious objection to provision of abortion care

Health professionals’ refusal to provide service that they oppose on moral or religious grounds is a significant barrier to women’s access to safe abortion and other reproductive health services. This resource contains recommendations for enacting laws and regulations that safeguard women’s access to services while still protecting providers’ rights of conscience. It also provides information on human rights standards that address provider refusal and includes a list of further resources.

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Zika underscores need for reproductive justice for all women

In Latin America, government responses to the Zika virus have been weak, disregarding the best interests of pregnant women and those who may become pregnant. This brief outlines Ipas’s stance on governments’ responses to the Zika crisis and women’s sexual and reproductive health needs. The brief also lists measures states can take to protect women’s health and rights during the Zika outbreak.

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Servicios de aborto para las mujeres jóvenes: Un juego de herramientas para la capacitación

Este juego de herramientas fue creado para proporcionar información y orientación sobre la prestación y accesibilidad de servicios de aborto inducido a mujeres jóvenes (entre 10 y 24 años de edad), según corresponda. Ofrece a capacitadores con experiencia antecedentes, materiales, instrucciones y consejos necesarios para facilitar las sesiones de capacitación de manera eficaz. Dado que los estudios de investigación realizados muestran pocas diferencias en las necesidades clínicas de las mujeres jóvenes en comparación con adultas, el juego de herramientas contiene más información sobre promoción y defensa (advocacy), alianzas y prestación de servicios que sobre temas clínicos. Es un recurso mundial para prestadores de servicios de salud, capacitadores, gerentes y asesores técnicos de programas de servicios de aborto, pero algunos materiales también se pueden utilizar para promover la participación de jóvenes, formuladores de políticas grupos comunitarios, donantes, promotores y otras partes interesadas.

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Comprehensive sexuality education for youth

Comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) is a critical means of improving young people’s access to sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services and their ability to make safe and informed decisions. However, the topic of abortion remains absent from most CSE programs,...

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