Abortion as a human right: The struggle to implement the abortion law in Colombia

Bianca M. Stifani, Laura Gil Urbano, Ana Cristina Gonzalez Velez, Cristina Villarreal Velásquez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In 2006, a Colombian Constitutional Court decision legalized abortion in cases of risk to a woman's physical or mental health, fetal malformation incompatible with life, or rape or incest. This decision resulted from legal action brought by feminist groups, and frames abortion as a human right. Advocates played a key role in implementing the new law by educating providers and the public about its broad interpretations. Healthcare providers and facilities did not have an organized response to the new law. Nonprofit organizations filled this gap, and provide a majority of legal abortions throughout the country. Civil society facilitated implementation of the new law by providing legal accompaniment to women facing barriers to accessing abortions. Despite these efforts, few legal abortions are performed each year, and clandestine, often unsafe abortions continue to prevail. Lack of information about the new law, stigma, and fluctuating political will remain key barriers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)12-18
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics
Volume143
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2018

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Legal Abortion
Colombia
Nonprofit Organizations
Incest
Rape
Jurisprudence
Women's Health
Health Personnel
Mental Health

Keywords

  • Advocacy
  • Colombia
  • Human rights
  • Implementation
  • Legalization
  • Public health
  • Safe abortion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology

Cite this

Abortion as a human right : The struggle to implement the abortion law in Colombia. / Stifani, Bianca M.; Gil Urbano, Laura; Gonzalez Velez, Ana Cristina; Villarreal Velásquez, Cristina.

In: International Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics, Vol. 143, 10.2018, p. 12-18.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Stifani, Bianca M. ; Gil Urbano, Laura ; Gonzalez Velez, Ana Cristina ; Villarreal Velásquez, Cristina. / Abortion as a human right : The struggle to implement the abortion law in Colombia. In: International Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics. 2018 ; Vol. 143. pp. 12-18.
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