On the 28th of September 2018, the world will be commemorating two very important days: The International Safe Abortion Day and the International Day for Universal Access to Information (IDUAI).

IDUAI emphasizes that the right to information is critical for informed decision-making, is instrumental to the realization of people’s empowerment and is vital to the promotion of equality of all groups in society, including women.

So how does IDUAI support the fight for safe abortion? Let’s first explore the following key facts:

  • An estimated 56 million abortions take place every year around the world and an estimated 25 million of these abortions will be unsafe.
  • 49% of unsafe abortions occur in developing countries where local laws either completely ban abortion or only allow it to save the woman’s life or preserve her physical and/or mental health.
  • In many countries, access to abortion services and information remains highly medicalized. This means that health care providers effectively become the custodians for safe abortion options, creating a further barrier for women. How so? Providers often stigmatize women seeking abortions. Providers can and often do morally object to providing safe abortion services. Providers may be untrained in safe abortion provision, which can turn simple and effective procedures into unsafe ones.
  • Medical abortion pills are extremely safe and effective to use autonomously as long as proper instructions are followed. In fact medical abortion is safer than the use of antibiotics, is safer than childbirth and even safer than Viagra for that matter.

So, what do these facts tell us? What do they all boil down to in the end?

Firstly and simply, abortions occur all over the over the world. They are occurring right now and they will continue to occur in the future. Abortion will always play a big role in how women manage their fertility and their lives.

Secondly, in many countries abortion laws remain highly restrictive, however, this does not reduce the number of women seeking an abortion. In addition, many women living in restrictive countries are able to locally purchase the abortion pills but have no idea how to safely and correctly use them.

As a result, safe abortion services and information will always be needed

In order to meet this information need, www.howtouseabortionpill.org and many of our safe abortion allies seek to ensure that women all over the world have the critical information they need to navigate a safe abortion on their own terms.

We are here to uncover the misinformation that surrounds the abortion pills and their use and to tell women that a self-induced medical abortion is not only possible but safe, effective and simple.

IDUAI recognizes and honors organizations that work to enforce women’s right to informed decision-making and whose efforts reaffirm that universal access to information and knowledge is both an inalienable human right and precondition to live independently and participate fully and equally in society.

HowToUse would like to give a shout out to all those organizations that continue to promote, defend and guarantee the sexual and reproductive rights of women all over the world by sharing reliable safe abortion information and resources.

Be informed. Be empowered. Be liberated.