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Home POLITICS These US restrictions on abortion threaten reproductive health everywhere

These US restrictions on abortion threaten reproductive health everywhere

The recent US Supreme Court decision that reversed roe v. calf has sparked a debate in the United States about how to protect reproductive freedom. President Biden proposed end the Senate’s filibuster rule to get Congress to pass legislation legalizing abortion rights, and he signed an executive order to “protect access to reproductive health services.” In some states, lawmakers have enacted new laws that expanded the right to abortion. What is missing from this debate, however, is similar discourse and concrete action by Democrats to protect reproductive rights not only in the United States but also in less developed countries, which are directly affected by Republican attacks on women. US funds for reproductive health around the world. .

Developing countries struggle to improve reproductive health services, even where abortion is legal. For example, safe abortion services have been legal in Nepal since 2004. The Nepalese Constitution enshrines “safe motherhood and reproductive healthas fundamental human rights. Despite these constitutional and legal protections, Nepal is witnessing at least three maternal deaths every day due to their limited ability to provide health care, particularly in remote areas, and the lack of easy access to safe abortion if delivery poses risks to maternal health.

This is a problem for many developing countries victimized by US policies on abortion abroad, including the 1973 Helms Amendment, which forbids US taxpayer money is used for abortions, even if abortion is legal in that jurisdiction. Although the Helms Amendment includes exemptions for cases of rape, incest, or risk to maternal health, many beneficiaries do not provide any abortion-related services for fear of losing US funding.

United States funding restrictions on reproductive health care services do not end with the Helms Amendment. In 1984, Republican President Ronald Reagan announced that overseas health care providers could not receive US funds if they provided abortion services even with non-US funds. This policy, known as the “Mexico City policy” or the “global gag rule,” also prohibition NGOs that receive US aid do not even refer to abortion when counseling pregnant people or engaging in advocacy for abortion rights anywhere. Rooted in US abortion policy, this policy resets every time a Democrat is president and resets every time Republicans regain control.

The global gag rule disproportionately targets poor, marginalized, and often indigenous women living in low-income countries who do not have access to private health care. Studies show that the global gag rule does not reduce abortion, but instead causes abortion rates to increase. When the United States, the world’s largest global health donor, defunds health clinics that provide, refer or advocate for abortion services, those clinics often Stop to operate, making contraceptives unavailable, leading to more unplanned pregnancies and therefore more abortions, often unsafe procedures.


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