Campaign Safe Abortion in South Africa [special 28 September report]

Global Health Strategies is an international organisation that focuses on improving health and well-being around the world using advocacy, communications, research, and policy analysis. They launched a partner-driven, social and community campaign on #MyBodyMyChoice on 10 September 2018 till 31 October. The campaign seeks to raise the discourse on reproductive justice and abortion as a key sexual and reproductive health and rights issue. It aims to reach women and communities, media, policymakers, providers and other advocates of women’s rights, using social and community media channels, to draw attention to the key barriers to access to safe abortion. It also aims to build awareness, challenge the stigma around abortion, and call on stakeholders to demand action for the effective implementation of the CTOPA. The partners for this campaign include Amnesty International South Africa, Gender Links, Health-e News, Ibis Reproductive Health, Marie Stopes South Africa, Medecins Sans Frontieres, Nalane for Reproductive Justice, Sexual and Reproductive Justice Coalition, Sonke Gender Justice, and Treatment Action Campaign.

As a part of this campaign, on September 28, the International Safe Abortion Day, they hosted a half-day event (Day of Action), that aimed to mobilize people in Johannesburg and included women and young girls from all walks of life, health organizations and experts in the field. The event included a march, musical performances, speeches by experts and other activities.

They also started a petition for increasing access to safe abortions in South Africa. Even though more than two decades have passed since the progressive Choice on Termination of Pregnancy Act (CTOPA), 1996, liberalised abortion in South Africa, women continue to face barriers in accessing safe abortion services.

Follow them on Twitter for more updates on the campaign!