MSF-USA Issues Press Release Responding to Trump’s Gag Rule Reinstatement

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January 25, 2017—Today, MSF-USA released a statement on the new administration’s reimplementation and expansion of the so-called global gag rule that withholds U.S. foreign aid to groups working in other countries who discuss abortion as an option for women. Also known as the Mexico City policy, it was first implemented by President Reagan in 1984 after it was announced at a UN population conference in Mexico City.

Although this rule does not directly affect MSF, which takes no money from the U.S. government, it will certainly affect women and girls, families, and communities in developing countries, as it has before when it was implemented by previous U.S. administrations.

An excerpt from the press release:

Research over the past decade has shown that policies that ban medical providers from educating women about abortion and their family planning options—including birth control and condoms—actually lead to more unwanted pregnancies, more unsafe abortions and death, and higher rates of sexually transmitted diseases, such as HIV. People need reproductive health services, including access to contraceptives and safe abortion care. This access has decreased in the past when the Mexico City Policy was in place.

Read the New York Times article: “Trump Revives Ban on Foreign Aid to Groups That Give Abortion Counseling”

It is MSF’s policy to provide access to abortion services to women who request it, or to direct them to services that are already available and accessible. Read about MSF’s policy and our reasons for this initiating this in 2004 here.

For a deeper read, see “Why MĂ©decins Sans Frontières (MSF) provides safe abortion care and what that involves“, published on BioMed Central website, and authored by BTNH contributor and advisor and the head of MSF’s sexual and reproductive health working group, Catrin Schulte-Hillen.

  #tomorrowneedsher #womenshealth Because Tomorrow Needs Her focuses on some of the impediments to women’s health, exposing injustices that disproportionately affect women and girls around the world.