January 23, 2009
President Barack Obama issued an executive order today that repealed the Global Gag Rule.
This executive order will have a monumental impact by saving the life, health, and suffering of literally millions of women worldwide yearly. In part because of restricted access to reproductive health services caused by the Global Gag Rule, more than 70,000 women annually die from unsafe abortions worldwide and the incidence of HIV/AIDS is skyrocketing.
The Global Gag Rule prohibited family planning programs in other nations that receive US aid from using non-US monies for abortion counseling, advocacy, and referrals. The rule was instituted by President Reagan in 1984, was repealed by President Clinton, and was reinstituted by President George W. Bush.
The Global Gag Rule inhibited women worldwide from access to gynecological exams, AIDS prevention and treatment, and contraceptive options. It also halted shipment of condoms and contraceptives to more than 20 countries.
The Feminist Majority has been working with the Obama/Biden transition team on women’s policy changes and is overjoyed with this victory for our sisters worldwide.
P.S. This is our moment. We believe many positive changes for women are on the immediate horizon