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We are getting closer to the launch of our Outreach Campaign in August, and we are very excited about the response so far. Please continue to watch your emails for updates on the campaign as we get closer to the launch date.
Thank you to everyone has participated so far. Here are a couple of things you can do to help, if you haven't done so already:
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Thank you so much for your support!
A new British study has found that women having repeat abortions were more likely to be in an abusive relationship.
The study, published in The Obstetrician and Gynaecologist, the journal of the Royal College of Ob-Gyns., found that 30 percent of women having a second abortion reported being in an abusive relationship and that the number increased for women having three or more abortions. One in three women in the study said they had experienced sexual and physical abuse throughout their lives.1
The research follows a U.S. study published last December showing that women who had abortions were more likely to report a history of sexual abuse and to have experienced stressful events in adulthood, such as miscarriage, physical violence or being in a life-threatening accident. The U.S. researchers noted that women who experience domestic violence are more likely to abort compared to women who are not in violent situations.
And a New Zealand study published last August found that one in 10 women reported being abused while pregnant and that abused women were 2.5 times more likely to undergo an abortion compared to women who were not abused.
The authors of the U.K. study wrote that no matter what one's position is on abortion, "there must be common ground that violence against pregnant women is intolerable. Doctors and health professionals working in a woman's health sector that provides abortion services are in a prime position to identify and provide support for women experiencing domestic violence."
The new study also seems to point to the need to ensure that women and girls are not being pressured, coerced or abused to force them into unwanted abortions. The Elliot Institute's model bill would hold abortion businesses liable for failing to screen for factors that put women at risk for unwanted abortions and for psychological problems as a result of abortion.
1. Aston, G, Bewley, S. "Abortion and domestic violence." The Obsterician and Gynaecologist 2009, 11: 163-168.
An article on a popular men's web site that offered advice on how to pressure or coerce your wife or girlfriend into an unwanted abortion has been removed after receiving a flood of criticism from people on both sides of the abortion debate.
The article, published at AskMen.com, described a situation in which a woman become pregnant after she and her partner agreed not to have a baby. The author, Isabella Snow, wrote about things the man could say to persuade the woman to have an abortion, even if it was unwanted.
Especially disturbing was the advice that the man threaten to withdraw his support if the woman has the baby anyway, which is a form of coercion. Snow tells men that they aren't obligated to support their child "beyond what your conscience and the law expects of you."
"This was her decision, not yours, and the bulk of the responsibility is now hers," Snow wrote. "Take a moment to spell this out for her when she gives you her final decision; it just may sway her over to your side."
And while Snow warns men that "blaming the woman for getting pregnant or threatening to end a relationship rarely gets positive results," nowhere does she suggest that such behavior is wrong. Instead, elsewhere in the article she tells men to back up their position by laying out the reasons they can't have a baby, asking questions about how they will afford the child or who will take care of the baby. Women and girls report that this is a technique often used at abortion businesses to make them feel that they can't have the baby and that abortion is their only option.
Coercion Is Happening Everywhere
Many readers expressed anger, disappointment and dismay at the author for endorsing and even encouraging coercive actions that can lead to unwanted abortions. There is strong evidence that these concerns may be warranted and that many abortions are, in fact, unwanted or coerced.
A survey of American and Russian women who had abortions found that more than half of American respondents reported feeling rushed or uncertain about the abortion and 64 percent reported feeling pressured to abort by others.
Further, there is no evidence that abortion businesses are attempting to give women viable options or make sure that the woman or girl really wants to abort. The same survey found that:
Men, too, can often be the victim of coercive tactics on the part of abortion counselors or may be told that they have no say in the abortion decision. Several posters on the AskMen site pointed out that men have no legal right to stop an abortion from happening if they do want to have their child.
Although the article has now been withdrawn, it points to a need for better efforts to stop unwanted, coerced and dangerous abortions. The Elliot Institute has proposed legislation that would hold abortion businesses liable for failing to screen for coercion or for other factors that put the woman or girl at risk for psychological problems after abortion.
A few weeks ago, we launched an effort asking you to help us put our "lens" on Squidoo into the Top 5. Squidoo is a popular web site where people can build "lenses" (web pages) on any topic. Those that reach the Top 5 in any category are listed on the Squidoo's home page where millions of visitors will see them.
Thanks to your help, "The UnChoice" lens at Squidoo was in the Top 5 in the News/Politics category for more than two weeks, reaching as high as #3!
This means that many, many people had the opportunity to read our information about widespread unwanted, coerced and forced abortions and the risks of abortion and injustice to women and girls everywhere.
We recently climbed back from #21 to #15, which means that people are still visiting the lens. Thank you for all your help, and please continue to spread the word by forwarding the lens to leaders, parents, youth groups, educators, counselors, or others who might want to learn more about this issue or make use of these resources. Invite your family and friends to visit our lens, too.
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