Caribbean governments need to get urgent motion to critique the felony regulation of abortion

Dear Editor,

In one particular daring stroke of his pen, President Biden, a devout Catholic, repealed the Global Gag Rule (GGR), and prolonged a vary of other actions in wellness, such as funding for the UNFPA. In an interview the President claimed that he ended the coverage as component of an hard work to “protect women’s wellness at property and abroad”.

 The Caribbean Spouse and children Organizing Affiliation (CFPA) has a large precedence on the ideal of a woman to decide on and be empowered to acquire management of her everyday living and welcomes President Biden’s strident management in the face of intensive controversy.

 There is very little like a chief who has the bravery to rise over the tumult of the second and act calmly in addressing the very long term widespread excellent. 

 Biden has distinguished between his personal faith and public policy. He has not authorized the sounds of the religious ideal to interfere with his obligation to fashion general public coverage to serve the requires of inadequate, vulnerable ladies throughout the planet.

 His action will breathe new lifestyle into our source-starved NGOs that try to progress sexual and reproductive wellness and rights for all men and women.

 The GGR, that cruel obstacle which has prevented us from supplying counsel and providers to gals searching for to exercising option with regards to being pregnant, has been eradicated.

 The need in the Caribbean is acute.  By age 45, additional than 60 percent of women of all ages in our location have had at the very least a person abortion and most have had repeat abortions. For our location, involvement with abortion is a greater part phenomenon for gentlemen and women.

 Our popular denial and suppression are stark indicators of our deep pathology concerning this truth.

For lousy girls, lots of of individuals abortions are unsafe – driven by colonial guidelines and social stigma. Our restrictive rules force inadequate ladies into unsafe treatments from which they undergo significant hurt.  The care of botched abortions is a significant drain on wellness assets.  This predicament is equally grossly inequitable and irrational.

 We continue on to cling to legislation that our colonial masters rejected in 1967, just a number of several years after several of us grew to become independent.

 Our independence has not resulted in new electricity to women.  Considerably from it: Our area ranks worst in the world in Personal Spouse Violence (IPV).

 Only Barbados (1983) and Guyana (1995) have repealed the prison law and recognized new civil assistance providing women of all ages control of their bodies.

In neither circumstance did the dread of an explosion of abortions or so-termed abortion tourism materialize.

 Other countries, Belize, St. Vincent and St. Lucia, have expanded the grounds for legal abortion within the criminal law.

 In Jamaica, there are renewed calls for girls to have the proper to make decisions pertaining to pregnancy with out them or their doctors becoming criminalized. Among the the voices contacting for the transform in the law are authorities ministers, Juliette Cuthbert-Flynn and Alando Terrelonge. We applaud the stance these political leaders have taken. We urge other political leaders to workout leadership – not to hide driving the crowd. 

 Recourse to a referendum is avoidance, not leadership.  We contend that a referendum must not be applied to choose no matter if a lady has a right to make your mind up regardless of whether she wishes to be pregnant or not. A woman’s right to pick out pregnancy is now certain in our constitutions and the international human legal rights instruments ratified by our governments.

 We urge our political leaders to glimpse at the information that clearly show the damage to women’s reproductive health and fitness.  We urge them to act with bravery, to confront the stigma and vogue new civil legal guidelines that give all women of all ages the legal authority to command their bodies.

 The CFPA phone calls for Caribbean governments to act on their own declaration of Health Ministers in Nassau in 1974 and get urgent motion to evaluation the prison law of abortion. Regional governments need to shift to guard the health of ladies and ladies, repeal discriminatory legal guidelines and procedures, and employ guidelines and mechanisms to enable ladies and women to exercise their reproductive and sexual rights.

Yours faithfully,

Rev. Patricia Sheerattan-Bisnauth

Main Executive Officer 

Caribbean Family members Scheduling Affiliation