Donald Trump’s latest action has just seriously set back women’s rights

The president has signed an action that will stop U.S. dollars going to international organisations who promote, provide or advise on abortions

This weekend may have been a triumphant one for women all over the world, with hundreds of thousands of people (including team Marie Claire) marching in unity around the world to stand up for women’s rights, a day after Donald Trump‘s inauguration, but it seems we have a long way to go, still.

Women marched for lots of reasons, including these 11, with everything from equality to reproductive rights being fought for. But, on Monday, surrounded by a team of men, Donald Trump signed an anti-abortion executive order that will have huge consequences for women’s reproductive health access around the world.

President Trump has now reinstated President Ronald Reagan’s 1984 Mexico City policy (AKA ‘the global gag rule’) which means that U.S. funding to nongovernmental organisations around the world is prohibited if they offer/advise/include abortion in their services.

Around $600 million of United States money is spent on international assistance for reproductive health rights every year. It contributes to family planning for around 27 million women around the world. However, none of that funding is spent on directly performing abortions. Back in 1973, The Helms amendment stopped tax dollars being used to fund international abortions, which is still in place now, but the Mexico City policy means that any organisation that even advises on abortion will be exempt from receiving any financial support.

President Bill Clinton did away with the policy, President George W. Bush implemented it again and President Barack Obama rejected it again when he was in power.

California’s Democratic Senator Kamala Harris tweeted this photo – and it pretty much sums up what the world is thinking.

The World Health Organisation estimates that more than 21 million women in developing countries have unsafe abortions every year, which accounts for 13% of annual maternal deaths. And, this comes only two days after people marched for women’s rights around the world.

Reading now

Popular