France Has Passed A Law To Make It Easier For Women To Have Abortions

They used to have to cite ‘distress’ to have a termination before 12 weeks


by Fiona Byrne |
Published on

A law has been passed in France that allows women to have an abortion before 12 weeks without having to give a reason for her decision.

French women were previously forced to cite a reason or prove ‘distress’ under a previous law dating back to 1975, so this new ruling means complete freedom of choice. The new law also includes a clause that ensures every woman has the right to obtain information about abortions services.

In a statement, Lilian Sepúlveda, director of the Global Legal Program at the Center for Reproductive Rights, said: ‘At a time when women in many parts of the world, including in the United States and Spain, are seeing their rights restricted, violated, and disrespected, France has set an important example for the rest of the globe with its progressive stance toward reproductive health care.

‘Ensuring a woman’s right to control her fertility is fundamental to achieving gender equality,’ Sepúlveda continued. ‘But passing today’s law is just the first step – we now look to French policymakers to ensure women see the benefits of this historic law implemented this year.’

All legal abortions are covered by government healthcare in France, as is contraception for girls between the ages of 15 and 18.

The law is in stark contrast to recent moves in Spain where new laws are making it almost impossible for women to terminate a pregnancy. Pro-choice protests have been taking place ever since the government announced its grand plan to restrict women's rights in December 2013.

As previously reported, the new abortion law will give Spain one of the most restrictive abortion laws in Europe. Only pregnancies as a result of rape or circumstances involving 'physical and mental risks' to the mother would warrant a legal abortion.

Picture: Getty

This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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