Culture Wars/Current Controversies

Alma Beauvais on “The Cost of Legalizing Abortion in Haiti”

Repro Nation Monthly | August 2023
The highs and lows of our current reality
Even without Wednesday’s Fifth Circuit ruling restricting access in the mifepristone court case, which for the time being changes nothing as the lawsuit winds its way through the federal courts, the past month has been a mixed bag of joyful and hellish news.


In Ohio, voters rejected a ballot measure that would have marked the end of popular democracy in the state by raising the threshold for enacting constitutional amendments, like a proposal to guarantee access to abortion. Even during what was expected to be a low-turnout summer election, the outcome serves as an important reminder that abortion rights and democracy remain important to the majority of voters.


But in Mississippi, the picture isn’t nearly as rosy. Time’s Charlotte Alter reports that a 13-year-old Black girl, who was raped by a stranger and unable to access abortion care, just gave birth, shortly before entering the seventh grade. Reading Alter’s report, it’s hard to find the words to even respond to what is becoming more and more common, not only in Mississippi but across the country. There are few words, mostly just feelings of anger and heartbreak. But the list of actions all of us can take to respond to the attacks on abortion access—that have successfully stripped away reproductive freedom for far too many, even when there are exceptions—only grows. Donate to her GoFundMe. Have an uncomfortable conversation with loved ones who are not “big on abortion” about why everyone deserves the right to make decisions about their own bodies. Support an abortion fund, such as the Mississippi Reproductive Freedom Fund, which aids pregnant people and their loved ones who do not otherwise have the means to travel for abortion care, let alone the ability to take time off from work and travel out of state for that care. Tell everyone you know about abortion funds, in case they might need to contact one or want to become a regular contributor, and the other resources included in this newsletter, such as And continue to share and reflect on both realities of the state of abortion—the highs and the lows—because as the Mississippi civil rights activist Fannie Lou Hamer said, “Nobody’s free until everybody’s free.”


Regina Mahone

Senior Editor

How to Get an Abortion

How to Use Abortion Pills

The Miscarriage and Abortion Hotline

If/When/How Repro Legal Helpline

Digital Security and Abortion Guide

Find Help Paying for an Abortion

Abortion Access for a Young Person

Abortion Access for Immigrants

Pregnancy Criminalization, Explained

Buy Needed Items for Abortion Providers Nationwide
Share Your Story of Poor-Quality Care Post-Roe
Alma Beauvais on “The Cost of Legalizing Abortion in Haiti”
While working as a fact-checking intern at The Nation, I began thinking about how and why my home country of Haiti has lagged behind when it comes to abortion deregulation. Other countries in Central and Latin America have recently seen successful protests advocating for safe and legal abortion. Over the past three years, for instance, Mexico, Argentina, and Colombia have decriminalized or fully legalized abortion thanks to the effective green wave movement. As I began looking into the issue, I came across a January 2023 Human Rights Watch report that stated the Haitian penal code is set to change in 2024. The revised code could potentially offer better protections and expanded access to safe abortions. However, while discussing the change with women’s rights activists in Haiti, it became clear that the new code was on shaky ground. The activists are concerned about its constitutionality and enduring impact. My research and reporting also brought to light the harrowing realities of the legal and social status of abortions in Haiti, where clandestine and unsafe procedures remain widespread. These realities are fueling alarming maternal mortality rates and infringing on reproductive freedom.


Read more.

More From The Nation
Ohio Voters Protected Their Last Shot at Representative Democracy
The defeat of Issue 1 is an unequivocal sign that Ohioans understood the connection between democracy and abortion—and that enthusiasm for abortion rights has not waned in the wake of Dobbs.
My Breastfeeding Journey Would Not Have Been Possible Without My Abortions
Because my abortions allowed me to become a parent when the timing was right, I was equipped to overcome the barriers to breastfeeding in a way that many new working parents are not.
Texas Is “Hell-Bent” on Preventing Pregnant Patients From Getting Life-Saving Abortion Care
Hours after a Texas judge ruled in favor of expanding abortion access to patients facing life-threatening complications, the state appealed the decision, blocking it from taking effect.
The New Law to Protect Pregnant Workers Is Already Changing Lives
The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act “flips the script” on employers and obligates them to accommodate their pregnant employees.
Kentucky’s Anti-LGBTQ “Parental Rights” Law Is a Disaster for Families, Teachers, and Kids
SB 150 recommends that schools use incorrect pronouns and limit sex education, while banning gender-affirming care for trans minors. “They’re actively targeting us.”
The Catholic Women Priests Fighting for Reproductive Justice
The church forbids women to become priests, but RCWP-USA believes that they are aptly situated to minister on abortion and offer a new, progressive stance.
Read all of the latest abortion news and analysis from The Nation here.
What We’re Reading

Even After Planned Parenthood Stopped Performing Abortions, Texas Is Still Trying to Shut It Down (The Texas Tribune)

Back to School: As a Black Parent, Unschooling Is My Family’s Path to Liberation (Reckon)
RFK Jr. Says He’d Sign a Federal Abortion Ban at 3 Months of Pregnancy, Then Reverses Course (NBC News)
Texas Questions Rights of Fetus in Prison Guard Lawsuit Despite Arguing Opposite on Abortion (The Guardian)
Now That Women Saved the Economy, Can We Have Abortion Back (Jezebel)
Ohio Supreme Court Sets Date for Arguments in Abortion Appeal (Ohio Capital Journal)
Talking About Terrible Men: ‘Home Is Not an Innately Safe Place for a Lot of People’ (Rewire News Group)
Georgia Mother Who Alleges Baby Was Decapitated During Delivery Files Lawsuit (CNN)
Extreme Heat Could Impact the Effectiveness of Birth Control and Pregnancy Tests (The 19th)
Campaign Launches to Give Arizonans a Constitutional Right to Abortion Access (AZ Mirror)
Finding an Abortion Facility Means Long Drives for 42% of U.S. Women, Says New Study (Yahoo!)
Shapiro Terminates State Funding for Real Alternatives Anti-Abortion Centers in Pa.  (Pennsylvania Capital-Star)
Study Cited by Texas Judge in Abortion-Pill Case Under Investigation (New Jersey Monitor)
An Abortion Ban Made Them Teen Parents. This Is Life Two Years Later. (The Washington Post)
Having an Abortion at Home? There’s a Hotline for That (Cosmopolitan)
These Black Women Are Running For Office To Save Reproductive Rights (Essence)
How One Alabama County Declared War on Pregnant Women Who Use Drugs (The Marshall Project)
Maternal Deaths Are Expected to Rise Under Abortion Bans, but the Increase May Be Hard to Measure (ProPublica)
Help us grow this newsletter!
Help us increase the reach of this newsletter and the resources it provides. Forward this email to your friends and they can sign up here.

Leave a Reply