For immediate release:
Antigua Planned Parenthood Association (APPA) / International Planned Parenthood Federation - Americas and The Caribbean Regional Office (IPPF ACRO) Statement on the government of Antigua and Barbuda re-examining abortion laws.
As the government announces a re-examination of existing abortion laws in Antigua and Barbuda the Antigua Planned Parenthood Association (APPA) is pleased that policymakers have heard the call of millions of women worldwide in the wake of the detrimental ruling of Roe vs. Wade in the U.S.A.
Access to abortion has been criminalized in Antigua and Barbuda since 1895, however, the government has acknowledged that the legal status has not prevented abortions with Chief of Staff in the Office of the Prime Minister, Lionel Hurst, commenting “We know that it is better to have it done by a doctor than the practice used by some of having non-professionals engaged in this system – because it can cause permanent damage”.
The recognition that the current legislation has caused more harm than good, is certainly an encouraging first step toward the right to bodily autonomy for the women and girls in the country.
“In our local context, the laws which criminalize abortion do not prevent the practice but certainly restrict access to safe and timely medical care. Decriminalizing abortion care would mean access to often life-saving care is a reality for women in Antigua and Barbuda.” - Lyndale Weaver-Greenaway, Executive Director at Antigua Planned Parenthood Association
The mission of the Antigua Planned Parenthood Association (APPA), established in 1970, is “to advance the sexual and reproductive well-being of the Antiguan and Barbudan population by providing safe, efficient, and affordable sexual and reproductive health services including family planning”
Dona Da Cosa Martinez, Deputy Regional Director of International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) Americas and The Caribbean Regional Office commends the government's recognition of the need for re-examination of restrictive laws that do more harm than good for its citizens., “Antigua and Barbuda are now at the height of making the changes which are necessary to ensure the protection and fulfillment of the human rights of all its citizens to have full access to reproductive care, and in doing so, establishing a precedent for the rest of the Caribbean to follow. Now is the time for regional leaders to ensure free and full access to safe abortion care in all their countries.”
The Antigua Planned Parenthood Association (APPA) is an Associate Member of the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF), a movement of 120 autonomous members with a presence in over 146 countries. Member Associations provide non-profit family planning services, sexual health, and abuse prevention training and education. IPPF’s goals include giving clients the information necessary to make informed sexual health decisions, promoting continuous sexual health, and making high-quality sexual health services available.