Abortion in Italy: the right to defend

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In Italy the right to abortion is guaranteed by law 194, approved in 1978, 44 years ago. A time that seems enormous to bring about the total application of a standard but which in Italy is still not enough. Because, as we told last November with an investigation and a long conversation between actress Kasia Smutniak and Emma Bonino, for women to access the voluntary termination of pregnancy is a real obstacle course. One figure above all: in our country more than 70 hospitals have over 70 per cent of conscientious objectors, as revealed by the research Never Data carried out by Chiara Lalli and Sonia Montegiove with the Luca Coscioni association. A photograph that appears even darker when looking at the United States where the Supreme Court overturned the historic Roe Vs Wade rulingwhich for almost 50 years had guaranteed access to abortion at the federal level.

“Rights that appear to have been acquired can be taken away from people at any moment,” he stresses Giulia Crivellinitreasurer of Italian radicals and campaign promoter Free to Abort. “For this reason, even in Italy it is so important to continue defending the right to abortion. In our country, law 194 protects the self-determination of women which, however, is continually eroded by the very high percentages of conscientious objectors and by numerous regional councils, such as those of Marche and Abruzzo, which exploit the gray areas of the law to prevent access to abortion by refusing, for example, to follow the new ministerial guidelines on pharmacological abortion ”.

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With the American ruling, every single country in the United States can now decide to adopt the legislation it prefers, without federal restrictions. With the probable result, already anticipated by the pages of New York Times that there will be an almost total ban on abortion in half of the states. “A big international step back”commented Emma Bonino in an interview with Corriere della Sera. “Unfortunately, this sentence is binding and that’s it. It is not that now you can appeal against the Supreme Court, it is like when in Italy the Constitutional Court decides that a referendum is not good, it ends there “.

Unacceptable. Thus the deputy dem Alessandro Zan defined the decision of the American Supreme Court. “It shows that we can never stop fighting for rights and to defend those we have acquired, every day. The goal of the right is to regress, to attack rights in order to attack democracy. We have to be on the front line to say no ».

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In Italy, although the 194 has existed for almost 50 years, in every region it is difficult for women to access the termination of pregnancy. A condition that has already been denounced also by the European Committee of Social Rights, an organ of the Council of Europe. “For several years the Ministry of Health has not provided, even upon request, updated data on violations of reproductive rights, clandestine abortions and the consequences of the increase in objectors”, continues Giulia Crivellini. “While we await clear signals from our institutions to protect women, we continue to fight so that 194 is respected and improved also in the name and in solidarity of American women”.

In 26 Italian hospitals conscientious objection reaches 100 percent. This results in an increase in the use of clandestine abortions from North to South, thanks to the online finding of the necessary drugs, that cannot be tracked by searches. “If a woman finds herself in the situation of having to have an abortion in Sicily, she must prepare for an ordeal”, she had told us. Giuliana Spera36, science teacher and collective activist Not one less in Palermo. “Precisely for this reason we provide practical support from start to finish: we pick them up at the station, take them to the first interview for medical certification and after the end of a week of reflection (required by law 194ed) we accompany them to the intervention “.

Also drug abortion (RU-486) it is very often hindered, despite having been introduced in Italy since 2009, by the ninth week of gestation. It has been possible in France since 1988 and in England since 1990. The obligation to stay in hospital has been eliminated and administration in outpatient clinics and clinics has been envisaged. But even this happens little, as Dr. Marina Toschi told us. “How long will we have to keep fighting?”

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Other stories of Vanity Fair that may interest you:

-The Stories We Are: Letter to my abortion partner

-The right denied: investigation into abortion in Italy

Source: Vanity Fair

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