White Paper – Chemia


Abortion is an enormous controversy that has been discussed multiple times from different angles, especially from ethical and moral ones. In my paper, I want to exclusively talk about how restrictive abortion laws negatively affect maternal mortality rates in third world countries. Contrary to what many people believe, evidence shows that legalizing abortion does not increase abortion rates but increases maternity mortality rates. In developing countries with restrictive abortion laws, women who want to terminate pregnancy keep seeking the way to access to these clandestine procedures even if it means exposing themselves to death. Access to safe abortion is discriminatory itself. Women in economic disadvantages are the target when talking about maternal mortality caused by clandestine abortion.  My main purpose is to demonstrate that restrictive abortion laws do not decrease abortion rates, they actually increase maternal mortality rates and cause an enormous discriminatory dilemma for poor women who do not have the necessary sources to access safe abortion.

Las adversas consecuencias de la legislación restrictiva sobre el aborto: argumentos y evidencias empíricas en la literatura latinoamericana” –  Susana Lerner y Agnès Guillaume.

The Essential Content of the Article: The article provides data that proves that legalization of abortion does not provokes an increasement in abortion rates. it is discussed that the magnitude of abortion also depends on factors related to economic issues, poor health access, and lack of sexual education. Also, strong arguments about the relation between socioeconomic status and maternal mortality are made.

What it proves: This article is mostly focused on the causes and effects of unsafe abortion in Latin American countries. Since I am interested in writing about the causes and consequences of restrictive abortion laws in this specific region, this article provides me valuable statistical data that will help me develop my argument. One of the arguments made in the article is somehow valuable to me because it does not involve the usual moral discussion about abortion but relates maternal mortality to socioeconomic status.

 “World Health Day-1998”

The Essential Content of the Statute: The statute provides numerous statistical results from studies that deeply examine maternal mortality from different angles. The paper also includes strong arguments that categorize maternal mortality as a social injustice that can be solved by improving standards of human rights that protect women’s reproductive health necessities. There are two sections that discusses the connection of maternal mortality to unsafe abortion and unwanted pregnancies. The statute also explains why abortion restrictive laws should be eliminated from any system in order to prevent the maternal mortality rate from increasing.

What it proves: Unsafe abortion has enormous impacts on the global maternal mortality rate. From the evidence attached in the paper, it seems that restrictive legislation is closely related to higher rates of clandestine procedures and maternal mortality. On the other hand, the paper provides actual evidence that proves that legalization of abortion does not increase abortion rates.

Unsafe Abortion: Unnecessary Maternal Mortality”

The Essential Content of the Article: The article presents many factual claims that support the idea that unsafe abortion causes unnecessary number of deaths on women. It provides numerical and visual data that shows the scope of the problem in different regions. South American countries appear to have the higher abortion rates related to maternal mortality. Evidence show that abortion-related deaths are more frequent in regions in which abortion is illegal. It proposes a couple of solutions to this epidemic – less restrictive abortion laws and greater contraceptive use.

What it proves:  The data provided in the article will help me identify different patterns of maternal mortality and restrictive abortion laws by regions. Evidence shows that clandestine abortion rates are higher in developing nations, which means that there might be an economic pattern on these data.

“Unsafe Abortion: The preventable pandemic”

The Essential Content of the Article: The article provides information about direct and indirect costs of unsafe abortions in different regions. Restrictive abortion laws result in clandestine abortion, which causes undesirable increasements in maternal mortality rates.

What it proves:  These women are not dying because of terminal illnesses, they are dying because governments in developing countries do not have the political will to do what is right. Restrictive abortion laws do not prevent women from having abortions, these laws prevent them from having access to safe procedures that protects her from death.

“Abortion and Maternal Mortality in the developing world”

The Essential Content of the Article: The article contains arguments about the high maternal mortality rates in third world countries. Even though the different political systems in developing countries are aware of abortion-related mortality, they haven’t provided adequate policies that enhances the accessibility to safe abortion. In the article, restrictive abortion laws are described as a social injustice that discriminate those who live in developing countries, especially those who are in economic disadvantage.

What it proves:  Restrictive abortion laws and inadequate delivery systems for contraception lead to higher unsafe abortion rates. Unsafe abortion is a form of economic exclusion and it is time to approach this topic from this angle.

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