International Workers’ Unity – Fourth International (IWU-FI) declaration
28S: International day of struggle for the right to abortion in the world
Globally, more than half of women and people with the ability to gestate in reproductive age live in countries where abortion is widely allowed. And in the last 25 years in most countries of the world feminist struggles have managed to start important conquests in favor of the legalization of this right. But the illegality of abortion continues to be the leading cause of preventable death of pregnant people, most of them, workers, youth, migrants and the poor. This wreaks havoc on health and the body when performed in the worst conditions of hiding. However, despite the harsh consequences that include jail and even death, women and people with the ability to gestate decide to continue abortion as a fundamental right to decide on their life and their bodies. Therefore, the green tide of struggles for the right to abortion that in 2018 flooded Argentina and spread to much of the world, today is more necessary than ever.
The world map of abortion indicates that 5% of women and people with the ability to gestate (90 million) live in countries where the right to termination of pregnancy is prohibited, even when the woman’s life is at risk. There are 29 countries, several of them in Central America and present situations of extreme poverty that exacerbate the risk of women’s lives, such as in El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Jamaica, Haiti and the Dominican Republic. In these countries the situation is terrible for women who suffer even rapes and spontaneous abortions since they end up incarcerated and sentenced to prison terms of more than 30 years, as is the case of Evelyn Hernández, the young Salvadoran woman who is fighting for her freedom effective. In Honduras today there are 42 dams for similar causes. There is also the case of Mexico that, although it is legalized in its capital, there are more than 700 women prisoners.
In turn, 22 percent of women and people with gestational capacity (359 million of childbearing age) live in countries where abortion is only allowed when it is to save the woman’s life. In total there are 39 countries. While 14 percent of women and people with the ability to gestate (237 million) live where abortion is legal when women’s health is at risk. There are 56 countries. 23 percent of women and people with the ability to gestate (386 million), live where they can abort for social and economic reasons (14 countries). Finally, 36 percent of women and people with the ability to gestate, the highest percentage (590 million), live in territories where voluntary termination of pregnancy is legal. It is about 67 countries, the vast majority in Europe.
However, in countries such as the United States, Nicaragua and Poland, the governments of Trump, Ortega and Duda have made progress in restricting the right to abortion, not only limiting the modality of effective access to abortion practices but also totally prohibiting the practice like in Nicaragua. Together with these governments, different fundamentalist religious and anti-rights sectors try to promote retrograde legislation that seeks to grant personal rights to fetuses to advance against the women´s rights. In Panama, Peru, Brazil and other countries, religious parliamentary benches have already introduced bills in this regard. And in countries where abortion has been legal for decades such as in Italy or the Spanish State, religious fundamentalists are in education and health to train doctors, nurses and other professional anti-rights and hospital controls and health centers declared conscientious objectors who deny our lives by not performing the practice. With the Vatican and Pope Francis in the lead, raising the campaign against training in sex education and rejecting the use of condoms. Meanwhile, they look the other way in the face of the miles of causes of pedophilia within the Church that come to light daily throughout the world.
That is why the legalization of abortion in Ireland in 2018, a country with a large Catholic population, has been a breakthrough. But the progress in the mobilization that calls for the immediate separation of the Catholic Church from the State to stop financing a retrograde institution was also essential.
This September 28, international day for the right to abortion, can not be another day. We are in the midst of a worldwide wave of struggles of the women’s and feminist movement that revolts against femicides, rapes, sexist violence, labor discrimination and sexual harassment and even sale to the street for, with the set of the working class, reject the adjustment plans and labor and pension reforms that the capitalist governments want to impose along with the IMF. Those reforms that more deeply attack women and youth. Therefore, continuing to fight for the right to legal, safe and free abortion, for the immediate separation of the churches from the States, is a fundamental task that we have to carry out the workers of the world. Not one step back with legal abortion. To the streets for our rights.
Workers’ Unity – Fourth International (IWU-FI)