Women on Waves Sparks Renewed Debate on Abortion in Portugal
As reported earlier this week, Women on Waves set sail on Monday for to bring attention to the nation's restrictive abortion policies. The deputy for Portugal’s Green Party, Isabel Castro, asserted that the ship will show “what cannot be forgotten, a law that is humiliating for women.” In response to the ships departure, Jose Areia de Carvalho, the head of Portugal’s Federation for Life stated that “it would be better for them not to come” because he sees the ship “encouraging the practice of acts that are criminal under Portuguese law,” reports Agence France-Presse.
As the debate between Portuguese officials continues, Women and Waves will carry out their mission off-shore in international waters, legally providing information on abortion, AIDS, and birth control to people during their two week stay in Portugal. In addition, Women on Waves will hand out abortion pills to women who are less than six and half weeks pregnant and have made the decision to terminate their pregnancies, reports Reuters.
Dr. Rebecca Gomperts, founder of the Women on Waves foundation, is hoping that the ship’s trip to Portugal will help break “the terrible taboo” of abortion in the country, according to Agence France-Presse. Portugal is the only country in the European Union that actively prosecutes women and their doctors for illegal abortion, reports Women on Waves. Women who are found guilty of undergoing an abortion face up to three years in prison, and a person found guilty of performing the operation faces up to eight years.
1/23/2015 #HeForShe Campaign Launches Pilot Effort Aimed at Institutional Equality - The United Nations' gender equality campaign #HeForShe has launched a new program called IMPACT 10X10X10.
United Nations Goodwill Ambassador Emma Watson, together with UN Women Executive DirectorPhumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, introduced the one-year pilot effort aimed at encouraging corporations, universities, and governments to play an active role in enhancing women's empowerment and equality in Davos, Switzerland today at the World Economic Forum.
"Women need to be equal participants in our homes, societies, in our governments, and in our workplaces," Watson said.
First introduced in September, HeForShe is a solidarity movement that calls on men and boys to confront gender inequalities that face women and girls globally. . . .
1/22/2015 BREAKING: House to Vote on Abortion Coverage Ban - After they were forced to scrap plans for a 20-week abortion ban, House Republican leaders decided late last night to instead ram through a vote today on a different extreme anti-abortion bill.
House Republicans are now pushing HR 7, a bill promoted as a ban on federal funding of abortion that would actually prevent women from using their own money to purchase health insurance that includes abortion care. . . .
1/22/2015 House Cancels Abortion Ban After GOP Congresswomen Drop Support - House Republicans cancelled plans to vote on a 20-week ban on abortion after Republican Congresswomen removed their names publicly as co-sponsors of the bill.
The vote on the unconstitutional 20-week ban had originally been scheduled for today, the anniversary of Roe v. . . .