September 28 Global Day of Action for Access to Safe and Legal Abortion - speak out againt abortion stigma
September 28 Global Day of Action for Access to Safe and Legal Abortion forms part of the campaign activities undertaken by International Campaign for Women’s Right to Safe Abortion, that aims to build an international movement to promote universal access to safe, legal abortion as a women’s health and human rights issue. As part of the International Campaign Advisory Group, Women’s Global Network for Reproductive Rights leads the coordination of September 28 annual campaigning activities, conducted by Campaign and WGNRR members, as well as allies and partners around the world, including ASTRA Network. September 28 has been a regional campaign for decriminalisation of abortion in Latin America and Caribbean for nearly twenty years before being taken on by SRHR activists all over the world as a Global Day of Action for Access to Safe and Legal Abortion in 2011.
This year the focus of the September 28 Day was on addressing abortion stigma as one of the main obstacles towards ensuring the availability and accessibility of comprehensive abortion services. There were several ways to become involved, among them various online activities on social media (check hashtags #AbortionStigma and #September28), the September 28 Virtual Mural 2.0, distribution of the September 28 Manifesto and numerous happenings, street/awareness raising actions (for a full list by regions click here).
The Federation for Women and Family Planning (also serving as ASTRA Network Secretariat) held a pro-choice happening on September 28 in the area of Warsaw Old Town - “Women suffer in Silence”. About 150 people stood together in a group and held a sheet of white paper with a women’s face printed on it in front of their own faces (see photos from the action here). During this event women’s stories related to abortion in Polish context were read aloud by two actresses and informational materials (such as a leaflet about abortion and the Polish reality) were distributed among observers. The Federation has come together in a wider pro-choice coalition with other NGOs, such as the Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights, the Campaign Against Homophobia, and KARAT Coalition among others. The Federation for Women and Family Planning also contributed to the September 28 virtual mural by creating a short film on abortion stigma.
Macedonian member organization, H.E.R.A., hosted a press conference on 28th September with an objective to promote the new national gender platform with special focus on abortion rights that has been recently created (see photos here). In the period of 29 September - 1 October a three day workshop took place and it focused on development of strategies for civil society advocacy in terms of preventing further restrictive amendments on Abortion Law.
Russian Association for Population and Development conducted a workshop on Reproductive Rights and International Instruments together with Center for Reproductive Rights for a group of lawyers and women`s rights activists on September 22/23.
Young volunteers and peer educators of Georgian HERA XXI prepared a photo session which reflects main problems and challenges in the field of safe abortion in Georgia. View the photo gallery here.
FROM: ASTRA CEE Bulletin on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights, No.10 (135), 2014