Sustainable Aid through Voluntary Establishment-Ghana (SAVE-GHANA)

Event Name:   End Abortion Stigma Now, Respect the Dignity of a Woman

Date(s):   28th September, 2013.

Type of Event:  Awareness raising activity: Radio Discussion and Phone-in Session

Description: 

As part of the September 28 events marking a day of action for women’s right to safe abortion which is in line with SAVE-Ghana’s strategy of ensuring that vulnerable groups of people are not deprived of their rights, we will hold a radio discussion on a local radio station that covers five (5) administrative districts and reaches about 85,000 listeners in English Language and in the local language on the abortion as a right.

The program targets 90% of the listening populace who are largely deprived and impoverished but a typical patriarchal society where the rights of women including their reproductive rights are trampled upon and thousands of women bear their pain and frustrations in silence. As a society where sex and associated issues are not discussed, everyone needs this education and we can only effectively reach out them through this medium.

The program will bring together a medical professional, a female abortion activist and a resource person from the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) as discussants on the radio program.

The discussions will center on abortion as a reproductive and human right, the implications of continuously criminalizing abortion, the circumstances under which criminalizing abortion constitutes a violation of the rights of the woman, where and how to access comprehensive abortion care and the need to de-stigmatize abortion among others.

It is expected that women will become more informed than ever about their right to safe abortion and their right to a dignified life after abortion and begin to speak out and make use of abortion services. Men and the general public are also expected to accept women’s right to access abortion and to support them to do so. We also expect that health professionals who sometimes are themselves a source of stigma by virtue of the comments they make and the treatment they met out to people seeking abortion, will recognize women’s decision for abortion as a right, respect them and treat them with dignity.

Part of the airtime will be devoted to phone-ins during which the phone lines of the radio station will be opened to general public for all categories of listeners to call in and ask questions or make contributions or suggestions.

The overall effect of this event is a change in perceptions and attitudes with about 70% of the people now adequately informed about abortion as a right.