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Camilo Jimenez

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Latest news from across the federation and our partners

Latest press releases

A selection of stories from across the Federation

Protest sign reads "keep abortion legal"

United States

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Statement on the US Supreme Court's draft opinion on Roe v Wade

3 May 2022

"If the reports are true, then the highest court in the land has reached its lowest point."

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| 24 February 2022

Statement on the escalating conflict in Ukraine

Following the disturbing reports coming out of Ukraine, IPPF has released a media statement on behalf of the Federation and its Member Association in Ukraine.   Despite the fact that sexual and reproductive healthcare (SRHR) needs increase significantly during conflict and humanitarian situations, the significant vulnerabilities of affected populations and displaced people are often overlooked, especially the experiences of women, girls and marginalized populations who are at increased risk of unintended pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections and sexual and gender-based violence. IPPF’s Director-General, Dr Alvaro Bermejo, said:   "The International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) is deeply concerned about the escalation of conflict in Ukraine. We take our responsibility to preserve the enormous gains made in life-saving sexual and reproductive healthcare across the country very seriously, especially for women, girls and marginalised populations, whose vulnerability and experiences are so often overlooked in humanitarian situations.  "For 20 years, IPPF has consistently worked to strengthen and protect the reproductive rights of people in Ukraine, working in the frontline conflict zones of Lugansk and Donetsk since 2014, training medical specialists to provide life-saving reproductive healthcare, psychosocial support and quality care to survivors of sexual and gender-based violence. “Our teams are now contingency planning across the region to address not only the needs of those still in Ukraine, but also the millions who are likely to be displaced by the conflict and who will require critical support to continue accessing healthcare. We will work closely with partners and other NGOs to ensure the least possible disruption to services. "IPPF stands in solidarity with the international community and the brave people of Ukraine who for the last eight years have faced terrifying and difficult circumstances that nobody should ever have to suffer through. We stand by IPPF's frontline team, who, despite the dangers, continue to facilitate life-saving healthcare for those who need it most. We will be monitoring the situation closely to ensure the safety of our colleagues across the region.” For European outlets, please contact [email protected] For UK and other international media outlets, please contact Karmen Ivey on [email protected] or [email protected]  

ukraine flag
media_center

| 24 February 2022

Statement on the escalating conflict in Ukraine

Following the disturbing reports coming out of Ukraine, IPPF has released a media statement on behalf of the Federation and its Member Association in Ukraine.   Despite the fact that sexual and reproductive healthcare (SRHR) needs increase significantly during conflict and humanitarian situations, the significant vulnerabilities of affected populations and displaced people are often overlooked, especially the experiences of women, girls and marginalized populations who are at increased risk of unintended pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections and sexual and gender-based violence. IPPF’s Director-General, Dr Alvaro Bermejo, said:   "The International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) is deeply concerned about the escalation of conflict in Ukraine. We take our responsibility to preserve the enormous gains made in life-saving sexual and reproductive healthcare across the country very seriously, especially for women, girls and marginalised populations, whose vulnerability and experiences are so often overlooked in humanitarian situations.  "For 20 years, IPPF has consistently worked to strengthen and protect the reproductive rights of people in Ukraine, working in the frontline conflict zones of Lugansk and Donetsk since 2014, training medical specialists to provide life-saving reproductive healthcare, psychosocial support and quality care to survivors of sexual and gender-based violence. “Our teams are now contingency planning across the region to address not only the needs of those still in Ukraine, but also the millions who are likely to be displaced by the conflict and who will require critical support to continue accessing healthcare. We will work closely with partners and other NGOs to ensure the least possible disruption to services. "IPPF stands in solidarity with the international community and the brave people of Ukraine who for the last eight years have faced terrifying and difficult circumstances that nobody should ever have to suffer through. We stand by IPPF's frontline team, who, despite the dangers, continue to facilitate life-saving healthcare for those who need it most. We will be monitoring the situation closely to ensure the safety of our colleagues across the region.” For European outlets, please contact [email protected] For UK and other international media outlets, please contact Karmen Ivey on [email protected] or [email protected]  

Woman outside the Colombian constitutional with eyes closed holding a sign
media center

| 22 February 2022

Colombia decriminalizes abortion

Today, the Colombian Constitutional Court decriminalized abortion up to 24 weeks in another victory for the Green Wave sweeping through Latin America. The historic decision follows years of campaigning by women's right's activists across Colombia and came off the back of two lawsuits that asked the court to declare article 122 of the penal code, that "the woman who causes her abortion or allows another to cause it, will incur a prison sentence from sixteen (16) to fifty-four (54) months" as unconstitutional. The court called an extraordinary meeting today, Monday 21st February, and took just a few hours to come to its decision which will go into effect immediately. ProFamilia, the International Planned Federation's Member Association in Colombia, and Colombia's largest provider of legal abortion care were heavily involved in pushing to extend the rights of those needing to access abortion care. Marta Royo, Executive Director for Profamilia, IPPF's Member Association in Colombia, said: "Today is a ground-breaking moment for the people of Colombia and a long-overdue guarantee of reproductive rights and dignity for all those who need abortion care, especially poor and rural women who bear the brunt of restrictive abortion policies. "The decriminalization of abortion up to 24 weeks in Colombia and the Green Wave movement across Latin America is centred not just on public health, but also the full lives, citizenship and human rights of girls, adolescents, and women – who, for multiple reasons, including inequity, access to education, gender-based violence and barriers to healthcare – continue to face unintended pregnancies. "The freedom for women to finally make their own choices about their pregnancies and their bodies is fundamental to disrupting the cycle of poverty that so many in Colombia face. This monumental decision is also a win for the dedicated health care providers, who will finally be recognized as people who simply care about the needs of others."  While Colombian women have supposedly been able to access abortion care since 2006 under three circumstances: if their life or health is at risk, in cases of fatal foetal abnormalities, or if the pregnancy is the by-product of rape or incest, in reality,  the criminalization of abortion persisted. The Guttmacher Institute found that less than one per cent of the estimated 400,000 abortions carried out each year in Colombia are performed legally, with women, especially poor, rural, vulnerable and marginalized women, facing significant barriers to accessing safe and timely abortion care. Many Colombian women are instead forced to carry their pregnancies to term or else seek other methods to end them. Figures collected by ProFamilia showed that during 2020, there were at least 26,223 unsafe abortions across Colombia, a startling amount for which consequences range from infection to life-changing injuries to death. As per the previous abortion law, other women have been imprisoned for up to four and a half years for having an abortion, even in cases where abortion should have been legal. In a shocking example of discrimination, data collected showed that poor rural women were more likely to be charged, with a third of those who faced charges also survivors of sexual violence. Eugenia Lopez Uribe, IPPF's Regional Director for Americas and the Caribbean Region, said: "Today Colombia took another step in the right direction for gender equality and full human rights for all, and we are incredibly proud of IPPF's Member Association, ProFamilia, for their tireless work alongside thousands of activists across Colombia and Latin America "This 24-week decriminalization is historic in the region and especially remarkable when we consider the current fragility of abortion rights globally and the anti-choice movements which continue to plague nations across the world, including in countries close to home like the United States of America. "While today we are celebrating this historic decision, the Green Wave is strong and growing, and the fight for reproductive rights and justice will not end until every person can access high-quality sexual and reproductive healthcare when and where they need it." For media enquiries in English, please contact Karmen Ivey on [email protected] or [email protected]  For media enquiries in Spanish or during UK night-time hours, please contact Pamela Martin Garcia on [email protected]    

Woman outside the Colombian constitutional with eyes closed holding a sign
media_center

| 21 February 2022

Colombia decriminalizes abortion

Today, the Colombian Constitutional Court decriminalized abortion up to 24 weeks in another victory for the Green Wave sweeping through Latin America. The historic decision follows years of campaigning by women's right's activists across Colombia and came off the back of two lawsuits that asked the court to declare article 122 of the penal code, that "the woman who causes her abortion or allows another to cause it, will incur a prison sentence from sixteen (16) to fifty-four (54) months" as unconstitutional. The court called an extraordinary meeting today, Monday 21st February, and took just a few hours to come to its decision which will go into effect immediately. ProFamilia, the International Planned Federation's Member Association in Colombia, and Colombia's largest provider of legal abortion care were heavily involved in pushing to extend the rights of those needing to access abortion care. Marta Royo, Executive Director for Profamilia, IPPF's Member Association in Colombia, said: "Today is a ground-breaking moment for the people of Colombia and a long-overdue guarantee of reproductive rights and dignity for all those who need abortion care, especially poor and rural women who bear the brunt of restrictive abortion policies. "The decriminalization of abortion up to 24 weeks in Colombia and the Green Wave movement across Latin America is centred not just on public health, but also the full lives, citizenship and human rights of girls, adolescents, and women – who, for multiple reasons, including inequity, access to education, gender-based violence and barriers to healthcare – continue to face unintended pregnancies. "The freedom for women to finally make their own choices about their pregnancies and their bodies is fundamental to disrupting the cycle of poverty that so many in Colombia face. This monumental decision is also a win for the dedicated health care providers, who will finally be recognized as people who simply care about the needs of others."  While Colombian women have supposedly been able to access abortion care since 2006 under three circumstances: if their life or health is at risk, in cases of fatal foetal abnormalities, or if the pregnancy is the by-product of rape or incest, in reality,  the criminalization of abortion persisted. The Guttmacher Institute found that less than one per cent of the estimated 400,000 abortions carried out each year in Colombia are performed legally, with women, especially poor, rural, vulnerable and marginalized women, facing significant barriers to accessing safe and timely abortion care. Many Colombian women are instead forced to carry their pregnancies to term or else seek other methods to end them. Figures collected by ProFamilia showed that during 2020, there were at least 26,223 unsafe abortions across Colombia, a startling amount for which consequences range from infection to life-changing injuries to death. As per the previous abortion law, other women have been imprisoned for up to four and a half years for having an abortion, even in cases where abortion should have been legal. In a shocking example of discrimination, data collected showed that poor rural women were more likely to be charged, with a third of those who faced charges also survivors of sexual violence. Eugenia Lopez Uribe, IPPF's Regional Director for Americas and the Caribbean Region, said: "Today Colombia took another step in the right direction for gender equality and full human rights for all, and we are incredibly proud of IPPF's Member Association, ProFamilia, for their tireless work alongside thousands of activists across Colombia and Latin America "This 24-week decriminalization is historic in the region and especially remarkable when we consider the current fragility of abortion rights globally and the anti-choice movements which continue to plague nations across the world, including in countries close to home like the United States of America. "While today we are celebrating this historic decision, the Green Wave is strong and growing, and the fight for reproductive rights and justice will not end until every person can access high-quality sexual and reproductive healthcare when and where they need it." For media enquiries in English, please contact Karmen Ivey on [email protected] or [email protected]  For media enquiries in Spanish or during UK night-time hours, please contact Pamela Martin Garcia on [email protected]    

Woman waving a green flag in support of abortion care
media center

| 21 February 2022

Mexico’s Supreme Court votes to decriminalize abortion

The International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) welcomes the unanimous decision taken by the Supreme Court of Mexico to decriminalize abortion. The decision is a step closer for women and pregnant people to fully exercise their reproductive rights and bodily autonomy through safe and legal abortion care.  Abortion is legal in four out of the 32 federal entities in Mexico. Only four other countries in the region - Argentina, Cuba, Uruguay, and Guyana have almost unrestricted and legal access to abortion care. Eugenia Lopez Uribe, IPPF’s Regional Director for the Americas and Caribbean said: “This historic ruling by the Supreme Court of Mexico is thanks to the feminist movement in Mexico and in the region, who have been relentless in their fight the law to recognize the dignity and humanity of people seeking abortion care. This decision will continue the Green Wave ripple effect across the region - we look at Argentina last year and now Mexico, these movements give us hope and motivation to continue to fight for sexual and reproductive health and rights for all.” Esperanza Delgado, Strategic Director for Advocacy and Interinstitutional Relations of MEXFAM added: “September 7 will become a memorable date in Mexico. In a progressive pronouncement in favour of reproductive autonomy, respect for the secular State, and the rights of women and pregnant people over those of the embryo, Mexico's highest legal authority indicated that it is unconstitutional to punish those who decide to terminate a pregnancy at its early stage.   “All of us who have joined forces and who are fortunate enough to fight for the recognition of human rights, should be proud and may our achievement inspire others in every corner of the planet. MEXFAM is committed to making this long-awaited legislation a reality for every person that decides to choose.” For media inquiries please contact [email protected] 

Woman waving a green flag in support of abortion care
media_center

| 09 September 2021

Mexico’s Supreme Court votes to decriminalize abortion

The International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) welcomes the unanimous decision taken by the Supreme Court of Mexico to decriminalize abortion. The decision is a step closer for women and pregnant people to fully exercise their reproductive rights and bodily autonomy through safe and legal abortion care.  Abortion is legal in four out of the 32 federal entities in Mexico. Only four other countries in the region - Argentina, Cuba, Uruguay, and Guyana have almost unrestricted and legal access to abortion care. Eugenia Lopez Uribe, IPPF’s Regional Director for the Americas and Caribbean said: “This historic ruling by the Supreme Court of Mexico is thanks to the feminist movement in Mexico and in the region, who have been relentless in their fight the law to recognize the dignity and humanity of people seeking abortion care. This decision will continue the Green Wave ripple effect across the region - we look at Argentina last year and now Mexico, these movements give us hope and motivation to continue to fight for sexual and reproductive health and rights for all.” Esperanza Delgado, Strategic Director for Advocacy and Interinstitutional Relations of MEXFAM added: “September 7 will become a memorable date in Mexico. In a progressive pronouncement in favour of reproductive autonomy, respect for the secular State, and the rights of women and pregnant people over those of the embryo, Mexico's highest legal authority indicated that it is unconstitutional to punish those who decide to terminate a pregnancy at its early stage.   “All of us who have joined forces and who are fortunate enough to fight for the recognition of human rights, should be proud and may our achievement inspire others in every corner of the planet. MEXFAM is committed to making this long-awaited legislation a reality for every person that decides to choose.” For media inquiries please contact [email protected] 

Guttmacher logo - white letter G on orange background
media center

| 21 February 2022

Statement on the Guttmacher Institute's “Just the Numbers” report: a snapshot of the impact of the UK aid cuts

The Guttmacher Institute has today released new data showing the impact of the UK aid cuts on sexual and reproductive health and rights for the fiscal year 2021 - 2022.  The figures show the devastating impact on the lives of women and girls around the world. Together with the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, the cuts threaten to undo years of progress towards gender equality and increasing access to reproductive choice. When surveyed, major sexual and reproductive health organizations reported they expected to receive at least £218.9 million in the fiscal year (FY) 2021–2022 (from April 2021 to March 2022) for family planning activities in low- and middle-income countries. The resulting cuts to the family planning programs of these major program-implementing organizations are estimated to have totalled £132.4 million in FY 2021–2022. The loss of funding will result in: 9.5 million fewer women and couples receiving contraceptive services  4.3 million more unintended pregnancies 1.8 million more unplanned births 1.4 million more unsafe abortions and 8000 more maternal deaths  The figures also show how much could have been achieved through sustained UK aid spending.  IPPF’s Director-General, Dr Alvaro Bermejo, said:   “The Guttmacher figures are a harrowing, but sadly unsurprising, insight into the catastrophic impact that the UK aid cuts will have on the health and lives of millions of women, girls and marginalized people across the globe, and serve to confirm what sexual and reproductive health charities have been saying since they were first made aware of the cuts. “We must also remember that the Guttmacher numbers are just a snapshot of the 2021 – 2022 fiscal year, and the effects of the Government’s sudden and short-sighted termination of support will stretch far beyond that, piling unthinkable pressure on people already dealing with the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic, and leading to millions of unintended pregnancies and thousands of preventable deaths. “With the upcoming spending review in November, we ask the UK Government to reconsider the cuts, which IPPF still believe to be outside of the boundaries of the law, and reinstate the 0.7% commitment, so that it can finally deliver on its promises to the millions of people it chose to abandon.” IPPF also signed on to a joint letter from the UK SRHR Network. For media inquiries please contact [email protected] 

Guttmacher logo - white letter G on orange background
media_center

| 21 October 2021

Statement on the Guttmacher Institute's “Just the Numbers” report: a snapshot of the impact of the UK aid cuts

The Guttmacher Institute has today released new data showing the impact of the UK aid cuts on sexual and reproductive health and rights for the fiscal year 2021 - 2022.  The figures show the devastating impact on the lives of women and girls around the world. Together with the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, the cuts threaten to undo years of progress towards gender equality and increasing access to reproductive choice. When surveyed, major sexual and reproductive health organizations reported they expected to receive at least £218.9 million in the fiscal year (FY) 2021–2022 (from April 2021 to March 2022) for family planning activities in low- and middle-income countries. The resulting cuts to the family planning programs of these major program-implementing organizations are estimated to have totalled £132.4 million in FY 2021–2022. The loss of funding will result in: 9.5 million fewer women and couples receiving contraceptive services  4.3 million more unintended pregnancies 1.8 million more unplanned births 1.4 million more unsafe abortions and 8000 more maternal deaths  The figures also show how much could have been achieved through sustained UK aid spending.  IPPF’s Director-General, Dr Alvaro Bermejo, said:   “The Guttmacher figures are a harrowing, but sadly unsurprising, insight into the catastrophic impact that the UK aid cuts will have on the health and lives of millions of women, girls and marginalized people across the globe, and serve to confirm what sexual and reproductive health charities have been saying since they were first made aware of the cuts. “We must also remember that the Guttmacher numbers are just a snapshot of the 2021 – 2022 fiscal year, and the effects of the Government’s sudden and short-sighted termination of support will stretch far beyond that, piling unthinkable pressure on people already dealing with the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic, and leading to millions of unintended pregnancies and thousands of preventable deaths. “With the upcoming spending review in November, we ask the UK Government to reconsider the cuts, which IPPF still believe to be outside of the boundaries of the law, and reinstate the 0.7% commitment, so that it can finally deliver on its promises to the millions of people it chose to abandon.” IPPF also signed on to a joint letter from the UK SRHR Network. For media inquiries please contact [email protected] 

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| 21 February 2022

IPPF reappoints Dr Alvaro Bermejo as Director-General

The International Planned Parenthood Federation’s (IPPF) Board of Trustees has reappointed Dr Alvaro Bermejo to a second and final four year-term as Director-General of IPPF through to 2026. Under his leadership, IPPF radically transformed its governance structure and resource allocation system so that its Member Associations and young people are the centre of its work. Kate Gilmore, Chair of IPPF’s Board of Trustees, said: “Under Alvaro’s leadership, IPPF has transformed its governance system and resource allocation process; making changes that once seemed beyond reach. Thanks to the courage and determination that Alvaro displayed throughout his first term of office, those reforms succeeded, being met with unanimous support by the General Assembly of our Member Associations. “Today, IPPF faces more challenges.  Credible, principled, and highly skilled leadership is essential to unite and sustain IPPF behind a bold and daring strategic vision for its global contribution to sexual and reproductive health and rights over the years ahead.  Ethical, humble, and impassioned leadership is essential if IPPF is to join, as we must, the wider international development sector in confronting and dismantling legacies of colonialism, racism, and discrimination. “That is why we are so delighted that Alvaro has accepted a second term of office.  As the IPPF Board of Trustees we stand with him.  We believe in and are inspired by his vision and commitment to further sexual and reproductive rights for all.  And, we are enormously proud to appoint him to be IPPF’s Director General for the coming four years”. Dr Alvaro Bermejo, IPPF’s Director General, said: “I am immensely proud to have been reappointed for a second and final term as IPPF’s Director-General to continue leading a dedicated global team in the fight for sexual and reproductive health and rights for all. “While I am under no illusion about the tremendous amount of work we have ahead of us if we are to deliver on our bold strategic vision while we navigate our way past the global pandemic and other challenges. I am confident that IPPF and our Member Associations will continue to innovate, transforming not just sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights but also how we express our sexuality and gender and how we love one another. “Over the next four years, I promise to lead IPPF with integrity, self-awareness and humility, paving the way for others within the organization, the development sector and beyond, as we work towards creating a better world for all. “ For media inquiries please contact [email protected] 

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media_center

| 05 November 2021

IPPF reappoints Dr Alvaro Bermejo as Director-General

The International Planned Parenthood Federation’s (IPPF) Board of Trustees has reappointed Dr Alvaro Bermejo to a second and final four year-term as Director-General of IPPF through to 2026. Under his leadership, IPPF radically transformed its governance structure and resource allocation system so that its Member Associations and young people are the centre of its work. Kate Gilmore, Chair of IPPF’s Board of Trustees, said: “Under Alvaro’s leadership, IPPF has transformed its governance system and resource allocation process; making changes that once seemed beyond reach. Thanks to the courage and determination that Alvaro displayed throughout his first term of office, those reforms succeeded, being met with unanimous support by the General Assembly of our Member Associations. “Today, IPPF faces more challenges.  Credible, principled, and highly skilled leadership is essential to unite and sustain IPPF behind a bold and daring strategic vision for its global contribution to sexual and reproductive health and rights over the years ahead.  Ethical, humble, and impassioned leadership is essential if IPPF is to join, as we must, the wider international development sector in confronting and dismantling legacies of colonialism, racism, and discrimination. “That is why we are so delighted that Alvaro has accepted a second term of office.  As the IPPF Board of Trustees we stand with him.  We believe in and are inspired by his vision and commitment to further sexual and reproductive rights for all.  And, we are enormously proud to appoint him to be IPPF’s Director General for the coming four years”. Dr Alvaro Bermejo, IPPF’s Director General, said: “I am immensely proud to have been reappointed for a second and final term as IPPF’s Director-General to continue leading a dedicated global team in the fight for sexual and reproductive health and rights for all. “While I am under no illusion about the tremendous amount of work we have ahead of us if we are to deliver on our bold strategic vision while we navigate our way past the global pandemic and other challenges. I am confident that IPPF and our Member Associations will continue to innovate, transforming not just sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights but also how we express our sexuality and gender and how we love one another. “Over the next four years, I promise to lead IPPF with integrity, self-awareness and humility, paving the way for others within the organization, the development sector and beyond, as we work towards creating a better world for all. “ For media inquiries please contact [email protected] 

The American flag with stars and stripes
media center

| 21 February 2022

Statement on the first anniversary of the rescindment of the Global Gag Rule

28 January 2022 heralds one year since President Biden rescinded the harmful Global Gag Rule (GGR). Otherwise known as the Mexico City Policy, its expansion in 2017 under Trump affected 12 billion dollars of funding, impacting thousands of life-saving healthcare services worldwide – especially across low-income countries. But while rescindment is a positive first step, the long-term harm of the Global Gag Rule lingers on. For IPPF, 53 healthcare projects in 32 countries were hit, with some Member Associations losing up to 60% of their funding. Programmes affected include HIV prevention and care, maternal health and nutrition, STI services, gender-based violence prevention, and services for vulnerable children. And although we have begun to re-establish long-standing partnerships, it takes time for funding to flow and to re-open closed healthcare clinics and community services – with some lost forever. In the meantime, there are women and girls who desperately need healthcare that have nowhere to turn. But in February, the US Congress has an opportunity to change the sexual and reproductive health landscape forever through a final negotiated funding bill that includes a permanent end to the deadly Global Gag Rule. As we celebrate one year of rescindment, we know the work is not done yet, but we are hopeful for the futures of millions of women and girls worldwide. We urge the US Congress to permanently repeal the Global Gag Rule to fully eradicate the lasting impact of the Mexico City Policy that has harmed women and girls around the world for 40 years.   Dr Alvaro Bermejo, Director-General of the International Planned Parenthood Federation, said: "Five years ago, Trump expanded the Global Gag Rule, a devastating neo-colonialist policy that forbids US aid to any organization that supports access to safe abortion care, disproportionately affecting women and girls in low-income countries. Today we mark one year since President Biden rescinded it, but the long-term harm and impacts don't simply go away.  "The Gag Rule is a callously designed mechanism set up to deny women and girls the right to decide what happens to their bodies. Its implementation doesn't just destroy life-saving abortion services but erodes access to other sexual and reproductive healthcare, including contraception, leading ultimately to increases in unintended pregnancy and forcing many to turn to unsafe and dangerous abortion methods.   "While rescindment is a positive first step, the looming threat of reinstatement under future anti-rights administrations undermines the sustainability of global sexual health programs and the pace of progress. After 40 long years, the time to act is now – we urge the US Congress to end this political game and stand up for the futures of millions of at-risk women and girls by permanently repealing the Global Gag Rule.  "By leaving a legacy that gives hope and stability to the sexual and reproductive health of people worldwide, the US will once again be a champion, leader, and innovator of human rights for all." For media inquiries please contact [email protected] 

The American flag with stars and stripes
media_center

| 28 January 2022

Statement on the first anniversary of the rescindment of the Global Gag Rule

28 January 2022 heralds one year since President Biden rescinded the harmful Global Gag Rule (GGR). Otherwise known as the Mexico City Policy, its expansion in 2017 under Trump affected 12 billion dollars of funding, impacting thousands of life-saving healthcare services worldwide – especially across low-income countries. But while rescindment is a positive first step, the long-term harm of the Global Gag Rule lingers on. For IPPF, 53 healthcare projects in 32 countries were hit, with some Member Associations losing up to 60% of their funding. Programmes affected include HIV prevention and care, maternal health and nutrition, STI services, gender-based violence prevention, and services for vulnerable children. And although we have begun to re-establish long-standing partnerships, it takes time for funding to flow and to re-open closed healthcare clinics and community services – with some lost forever. In the meantime, there are women and girls who desperately need healthcare that have nowhere to turn. But in February, the US Congress has an opportunity to change the sexual and reproductive health landscape forever through a final negotiated funding bill that includes a permanent end to the deadly Global Gag Rule. As we celebrate one year of rescindment, we know the work is not done yet, but we are hopeful for the futures of millions of women and girls worldwide. We urge the US Congress to permanently repeal the Global Gag Rule to fully eradicate the lasting impact of the Mexico City Policy that has harmed women and girls around the world for 40 years.   Dr Alvaro Bermejo, Director-General of the International Planned Parenthood Federation, said: "Five years ago, Trump expanded the Global Gag Rule, a devastating neo-colonialist policy that forbids US aid to any organization that supports access to safe abortion care, disproportionately affecting women and girls in low-income countries. Today we mark one year since President Biden rescinded it, but the long-term harm and impacts don't simply go away.  "The Gag Rule is a callously designed mechanism set up to deny women and girls the right to decide what happens to their bodies. Its implementation doesn't just destroy life-saving abortion services but erodes access to other sexual and reproductive healthcare, including contraception, leading ultimately to increases in unintended pregnancy and forcing many to turn to unsafe and dangerous abortion methods.   "While rescindment is a positive first step, the looming threat of reinstatement under future anti-rights administrations undermines the sustainability of global sexual health programs and the pace of progress. After 40 long years, the time to act is now – we urge the US Congress to end this political game and stand up for the futures of millions of at-risk women and girls by permanently repealing the Global Gag Rule.  "By leaving a legacy that gives hope and stability to the sexual and reproductive health of people worldwide, the US will once again be a champion, leader, and innovator of human rights for all." For media inquiries please contact [email protected] 

ukraine flag
media center

| 24 February 2022

Statement on the escalating conflict in Ukraine

Following the disturbing reports coming out of Ukraine, IPPF has released a media statement on behalf of the Federation and its Member Association in Ukraine.   Despite the fact that sexual and reproductive healthcare (SRHR) needs increase significantly during conflict and humanitarian situations, the significant vulnerabilities of affected populations and displaced people are often overlooked, especially the experiences of women, girls and marginalized populations who are at increased risk of unintended pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections and sexual and gender-based violence. IPPF’s Director-General, Dr Alvaro Bermejo, said:   "The International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) is deeply concerned about the escalation of conflict in Ukraine. We take our responsibility to preserve the enormous gains made in life-saving sexual and reproductive healthcare across the country very seriously, especially for women, girls and marginalised populations, whose vulnerability and experiences are so often overlooked in humanitarian situations.  "For 20 years, IPPF has consistently worked to strengthen and protect the reproductive rights of people in Ukraine, working in the frontline conflict zones of Lugansk and Donetsk since 2014, training medical specialists to provide life-saving reproductive healthcare, psychosocial support and quality care to survivors of sexual and gender-based violence. “Our teams are now contingency planning across the region to address not only the needs of those still in Ukraine, but also the millions who are likely to be displaced by the conflict and who will require critical support to continue accessing healthcare. We will work closely with partners and other NGOs to ensure the least possible disruption to services. "IPPF stands in solidarity with the international community and the brave people of Ukraine who for the last eight years have faced terrifying and difficult circumstances that nobody should ever have to suffer through. We stand by IPPF's frontline team, who, despite the dangers, continue to facilitate life-saving healthcare for those who need it most. We will be monitoring the situation closely to ensure the safety of our colleagues across the region.” For European outlets, please contact [email protected] For UK and other international media outlets, please contact Karmen Ivey on [email protected] or [email protected]  

ukraine flag
media_center

| 24 February 2022

Statement on the escalating conflict in Ukraine

Following the disturbing reports coming out of Ukraine, IPPF has released a media statement on behalf of the Federation and its Member Association in Ukraine.   Despite the fact that sexual and reproductive healthcare (SRHR) needs increase significantly during conflict and humanitarian situations, the significant vulnerabilities of affected populations and displaced people are often overlooked, especially the experiences of women, girls and marginalized populations who are at increased risk of unintended pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections and sexual and gender-based violence. IPPF’s Director-General, Dr Alvaro Bermejo, said:   "The International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) is deeply concerned about the escalation of conflict in Ukraine. We take our responsibility to preserve the enormous gains made in life-saving sexual and reproductive healthcare across the country very seriously, especially for women, girls and marginalised populations, whose vulnerability and experiences are so often overlooked in humanitarian situations.  "For 20 years, IPPF has consistently worked to strengthen and protect the reproductive rights of people in Ukraine, working in the frontline conflict zones of Lugansk and Donetsk since 2014, training medical specialists to provide life-saving reproductive healthcare, psychosocial support and quality care to survivors of sexual and gender-based violence. “Our teams are now contingency planning across the region to address not only the needs of those still in Ukraine, but also the millions who are likely to be displaced by the conflict and who will require critical support to continue accessing healthcare. We will work closely with partners and other NGOs to ensure the least possible disruption to services. "IPPF stands in solidarity with the international community and the brave people of Ukraine who for the last eight years have faced terrifying and difficult circumstances that nobody should ever have to suffer through. We stand by IPPF's frontline team, who, despite the dangers, continue to facilitate life-saving healthcare for those who need it most. We will be monitoring the situation closely to ensure the safety of our colleagues across the region.” For European outlets, please contact [email protected] For UK and other international media outlets, please contact Karmen Ivey on [email protected] or [email protected]  

Woman outside the Colombian constitutional with eyes closed holding a sign
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| 22 February 2022

Colombia decriminalizes abortion

Today, the Colombian Constitutional Court decriminalized abortion up to 24 weeks in another victory for the Green Wave sweeping through Latin America. The historic decision follows years of campaigning by women's right's activists across Colombia and came off the back of two lawsuits that asked the court to declare article 122 of the penal code, that "the woman who causes her abortion or allows another to cause it, will incur a prison sentence from sixteen (16) to fifty-four (54) months" as unconstitutional. The court called an extraordinary meeting today, Monday 21st February, and took just a few hours to come to its decision which will go into effect immediately. ProFamilia, the International Planned Federation's Member Association in Colombia, and Colombia's largest provider of legal abortion care were heavily involved in pushing to extend the rights of those needing to access abortion care. Marta Royo, Executive Director for Profamilia, IPPF's Member Association in Colombia, said: "Today is a ground-breaking moment for the people of Colombia and a long-overdue guarantee of reproductive rights and dignity for all those who need abortion care, especially poor and rural women who bear the brunt of restrictive abortion policies. "The decriminalization of abortion up to 24 weeks in Colombia and the Green Wave movement across Latin America is centred not just on public health, but also the full lives, citizenship and human rights of girls, adolescents, and women – who, for multiple reasons, including inequity, access to education, gender-based violence and barriers to healthcare – continue to face unintended pregnancies. "The freedom for women to finally make their own choices about their pregnancies and their bodies is fundamental to disrupting the cycle of poverty that so many in Colombia face. This monumental decision is also a win for the dedicated health care providers, who will finally be recognized as people who simply care about the needs of others."  While Colombian women have supposedly been able to access abortion care since 2006 under three circumstances: if their life or health is at risk, in cases of fatal foetal abnormalities, or if the pregnancy is the by-product of rape or incest, in reality,  the criminalization of abortion persisted. The Guttmacher Institute found that less than one per cent of the estimated 400,000 abortions carried out each year in Colombia are performed legally, with women, especially poor, rural, vulnerable and marginalized women, facing significant barriers to accessing safe and timely abortion care. Many Colombian women are instead forced to carry their pregnancies to term or else seek other methods to end them. Figures collected by ProFamilia showed that during 2020, there were at least 26,223 unsafe abortions across Colombia, a startling amount for which consequences range from infection to life-changing injuries to death. As per the previous abortion law, other women have been imprisoned for up to four and a half years for having an abortion, even in cases where abortion should have been legal. In a shocking example of discrimination, data collected showed that poor rural women were more likely to be charged, with a third of those who faced charges also survivors of sexual violence. Eugenia Lopez Uribe, IPPF's Regional Director for Americas and the Caribbean Region, said: "Today Colombia took another step in the right direction for gender equality and full human rights for all, and we are incredibly proud of IPPF's Member Association, ProFamilia, for their tireless work alongside thousands of activists across Colombia and Latin America "This 24-week decriminalization is historic in the region and especially remarkable when we consider the current fragility of abortion rights globally and the anti-choice movements which continue to plague nations across the world, including in countries close to home like the United States of America. "While today we are celebrating this historic decision, the Green Wave is strong and growing, and the fight for reproductive rights and justice will not end until every person can access high-quality sexual and reproductive healthcare when and where they need it." For media enquiries in English, please contact Karmen Ivey on [email protected] or [email protected]  For media enquiries in Spanish or during UK night-time hours, please contact Pamela Martin Garcia on [email protected]    

Woman outside the Colombian constitutional with eyes closed holding a sign
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| 21 February 2022

Colombia decriminalizes abortion

Today, the Colombian Constitutional Court decriminalized abortion up to 24 weeks in another victory for the Green Wave sweeping through Latin America. The historic decision follows years of campaigning by women's right's activists across Colombia and came off the back of two lawsuits that asked the court to declare article 122 of the penal code, that "the woman who causes her abortion or allows another to cause it, will incur a prison sentence from sixteen (16) to fifty-four (54) months" as unconstitutional. The court called an extraordinary meeting today, Monday 21st February, and took just a few hours to come to its decision which will go into effect immediately. ProFamilia, the International Planned Federation's Member Association in Colombia, and Colombia's largest provider of legal abortion care were heavily involved in pushing to extend the rights of those needing to access abortion care. Marta Royo, Executive Director for Profamilia, IPPF's Member Association in Colombia, said: "Today is a ground-breaking moment for the people of Colombia and a long-overdue guarantee of reproductive rights and dignity for all those who need abortion care, especially poor and rural women who bear the brunt of restrictive abortion policies. "The decriminalization of abortion up to 24 weeks in Colombia and the Green Wave movement across Latin America is centred not just on public health, but also the full lives, citizenship and human rights of girls, adolescents, and women – who, for multiple reasons, including inequity, access to education, gender-based violence and barriers to healthcare – continue to face unintended pregnancies. "The freedom for women to finally make their own choices about their pregnancies and their bodies is fundamental to disrupting the cycle of poverty that so many in Colombia face. This monumental decision is also a win for the dedicated health care providers, who will finally be recognized as people who simply care about the needs of others."  While Colombian women have supposedly been able to access abortion care since 2006 under three circumstances: if their life or health is at risk, in cases of fatal foetal abnormalities, or if the pregnancy is the by-product of rape or incest, in reality,  the criminalization of abortion persisted. The Guttmacher Institute found that less than one per cent of the estimated 400,000 abortions carried out each year in Colombia are performed legally, with women, especially poor, rural, vulnerable and marginalized women, facing significant barriers to accessing safe and timely abortion care. Many Colombian women are instead forced to carry their pregnancies to term or else seek other methods to end them. Figures collected by ProFamilia showed that during 2020, there were at least 26,223 unsafe abortions across Colombia, a startling amount for which consequences range from infection to life-changing injuries to death. As per the previous abortion law, other women have been imprisoned for up to four and a half years for having an abortion, even in cases where abortion should have been legal. In a shocking example of discrimination, data collected showed that poor rural women were more likely to be charged, with a third of those who faced charges also survivors of sexual violence. Eugenia Lopez Uribe, IPPF's Regional Director for Americas and the Caribbean Region, said: "Today Colombia took another step in the right direction for gender equality and full human rights for all, and we are incredibly proud of IPPF's Member Association, ProFamilia, for their tireless work alongside thousands of activists across Colombia and Latin America "This 24-week decriminalization is historic in the region and especially remarkable when we consider the current fragility of abortion rights globally and the anti-choice movements which continue to plague nations across the world, including in countries close to home like the United States of America. "While today we are celebrating this historic decision, the Green Wave is strong and growing, and the fight for reproductive rights and justice will not end until every person can access high-quality sexual and reproductive healthcare when and where they need it." For media enquiries in English, please contact Karmen Ivey on [email protected] or [email protected]  For media enquiries in Spanish or during UK night-time hours, please contact Pamela Martin Garcia on [email protected]    

Woman waving a green flag in support of abortion care
media center

| 21 February 2022

Mexico’s Supreme Court votes to decriminalize abortion

The International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) welcomes the unanimous decision taken by the Supreme Court of Mexico to decriminalize abortion. The decision is a step closer for women and pregnant people to fully exercise their reproductive rights and bodily autonomy through safe and legal abortion care.  Abortion is legal in four out of the 32 federal entities in Mexico. Only four other countries in the region - Argentina, Cuba, Uruguay, and Guyana have almost unrestricted and legal access to abortion care. Eugenia Lopez Uribe, IPPF’s Regional Director for the Americas and Caribbean said: “This historic ruling by the Supreme Court of Mexico is thanks to the feminist movement in Mexico and in the region, who have been relentless in their fight the law to recognize the dignity and humanity of people seeking abortion care. This decision will continue the Green Wave ripple effect across the region - we look at Argentina last year and now Mexico, these movements give us hope and motivation to continue to fight for sexual and reproductive health and rights for all.” Esperanza Delgado, Strategic Director for Advocacy and Interinstitutional Relations of MEXFAM added: “September 7 will become a memorable date in Mexico. In a progressive pronouncement in favour of reproductive autonomy, respect for the secular State, and the rights of women and pregnant people over those of the embryo, Mexico's highest legal authority indicated that it is unconstitutional to punish those who decide to terminate a pregnancy at its early stage.   “All of us who have joined forces and who are fortunate enough to fight for the recognition of human rights, should be proud and may our achievement inspire others in every corner of the planet. MEXFAM is committed to making this long-awaited legislation a reality for every person that decides to choose.” For media inquiries please contact [email protected] 

Woman waving a green flag in support of abortion care
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| 09 September 2021

Mexico’s Supreme Court votes to decriminalize abortion

The International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) welcomes the unanimous decision taken by the Supreme Court of Mexico to decriminalize abortion. The decision is a step closer for women and pregnant people to fully exercise their reproductive rights and bodily autonomy through safe and legal abortion care.  Abortion is legal in four out of the 32 federal entities in Mexico. Only four other countries in the region - Argentina, Cuba, Uruguay, and Guyana have almost unrestricted and legal access to abortion care. Eugenia Lopez Uribe, IPPF’s Regional Director for the Americas and Caribbean said: “This historic ruling by the Supreme Court of Mexico is thanks to the feminist movement in Mexico and in the region, who have been relentless in their fight the law to recognize the dignity and humanity of people seeking abortion care. This decision will continue the Green Wave ripple effect across the region - we look at Argentina last year and now Mexico, these movements give us hope and motivation to continue to fight for sexual and reproductive health and rights for all.” Esperanza Delgado, Strategic Director for Advocacy and Interinstitutional Relations of MEXFAM added: “September 7 will become a memorable date in Mexico. In a progressive pronouncement in favour of reproductive autonomy, respect for the secular State, and the rights of women and pregnant people over those of the embryo, Mexico's highest legal authority indicated that it is unconstitutional to punish those who decide to terminate a pregnancy at its early stage.   “All of us who have joined forces and who are fortunate enough to fight for the recognition of human rights, should be proud and may our achievement inspire others in every corner of the planet. MEXFAM is committed to making this long-awaited legislation a reality for every person that decides to choose.” For media inquiries please contact [email protected] 

Guttmacher logo - white letter G on orange background
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| 21 February 2022

Statement on the Guttmacher Institute's “Just the Numbers” report: a snapshot of the impact of the UK aid cuts

The Guttmacher Institute has today released new data showing the impact of the UK aid cuts on sexual and reproductive health and rights for the fiscal year 2021 - 2022.  The figures show the devastating impact on the lives of women and girls around the world. Together with the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, the cuts threaten to undo years of progress towards gender equality and increasing access to reproductive choice. When surveyed, major sexual and reproductive health organizations reported they expected to receive at least £218.9 million in the fiscal year (FY) 2021–2022 (from April 2021 to March 2022) for family planning activities in low- and middle-income countries. The resulting cuts to the family planning programs of these major program-implementing organizations are estimated to have totalled £132.4 million in FY 2021–2022. The loss of funding will result in: 9.5 million fewer women and couples receiving contraceptive services  4.3 million more unintended pregnancies 1.8 million more unplanned births 1.4 million more unsafe abortions and 8000 more maternal deaths  The figures also show how much could have been achieved through sustained UK aid spending.  IPPF’s Director-General, Dr Alvaro Bermejo, said:   “The Guttmacher figures are a harrowing, but sadly unsurprising, insight into the catastrophic impact that the UK aid cuts will have on the health and lives of millions of women, girls and marginalized people across the globe, and serve to confirm what sexual and reproductive health charities have been saying since they were first made aware of the cuts. “We must also remember that the Guttmacher numbers are just a snapshot of the 2021 – 2022 fiscal year, and the effects of the Government’s sudden and short-sighted termination of support will stretch far beyond that, piling unthinkable pressure on people already dealing with the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic, and leading to millions of unintended pregnancies and thousands of preventable deaths. “With the upcoming spending review in November, we ask the UK Government to reconsider the cuts, which IPPF still believe to be outside of the boundaries of the law, and reinstate the 0.7% commitment, so that it can finally deliver on its promises to the millions of people it chose to abandon.” IPPF also signed on to a joint letter from the UK SRHR Network. For media inquiries please contact [email protected] 

Guttmacher logo - white letter G on orange background
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| 21 October 2021

Statement on the Guttmacher Institute's “Just the Numbers” report: a snapshot of the impact of the UK aid cuts

The Guttmacher Institute has today released new data showing the impact of the UK aid cuts on sexual and reproductive health and rights for the fiscal year 2021 - 2022.  The figures show the devastating impact on the lives of women and girls around the world. Together with the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, the cuts threaten to undo years of progress towards gender equality and increasing access to reproductive choice. When surveyed, major sexual and reproductive health organizations reported they expected to receive at least £218.9 million in the fiscal year (FY) 2021–2022 (from April 2021 to March 2022) for family planning activities in low- and middle-income countries. The resulting cuts to the family planning programs of these major program-implementing organizations are estimated to have totalled £132.4 million in FY 2021–2022. The loss of funding will result in: 9.5 million fewer women and couples receiving contraceptive services  4.3 million more unintended pregnancies 1.8 million more unplanned births 1.4 million more unsafe abortions and 8000 more maternal deaths  The figures also show how much could have been achieved through sustained UK aid spending.  IPPF’s Director-General, Dr Alvaro Bermejo, said:   “The Guttmacher figures are a harrowing, but sadly unsurprising, insight into the catastrophic impact that the UK aid cuts will have on the health and lives of millions of women, girls and marginalized people across the globe, and serve to confirm what sexual and reproductive health charities have been saying since they were first made aware of the cuts. “We must also remember that the Guttmacher numbers are just a snapshot of the 2021 – 2022 fiscal year, and the effects of the Government’s sudden and short-sighted termination of support will stretch far beyond that, piling unthinkable pressure on people already dealing with the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic, and leading to millions of unintended pregnancies and thousands of preventable deaths. “With the upcoming spending review in November, we ask the UK Government to reconsider the cuts, which IPPF still believe to be outside of the boundaries of the law, and reinstate the 0.7% commitment, so that it can finally deliver on its promises to the millions of people it chose to abandon.” IPPF also signed on to a joint letter from the UK SRHR Network. For media inquiries please contact [email protected] 

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| 21 February 2022

IPPF reappoints Dr Alvaro Bermejo as Director-General

The International Planned Parenthood Federation’s (IPPF) Board of Trustees has reappointed Dr Alvaro Bermejo to a second and final four year-term as Director-General of IPPF through to 2026. Under his leadership, IPPF radically transformed its governance structure and resource allocation system so that its Member Associations and young people are the centre of its work. Kate Gilmore, Chair of IPPF’s Board of Trustees, said: “Under Alvaro’s leadership, IPPF has transformed its governance system and resource allocation process; making changes that once seemed beyond reach. Thanks to the courage and determination that Alvaro displayed throughout his first term of office, those reforms succeeded, being met with unanimous support by the General Assembly of our Member Associations. “Today, IPPF faces more challenges.  Credible, principled, and highly skilled leadership is essential to unite and sustain IPPF behind a bold and daring strategic vision for its global contribution to sexual and reproductive health and rights over the years ahead.  Ethical, humble, and impassioned leadership is essential if IPPF is to join, as we must, the wider international development sector in confronting and dismantling legacies of colonialism, racism, and discrimination. “That is why we are so delighted that Alvaro has accepted a second term of office.  As the IPPF Board of Trustees we stand with him.  We believe in and are inspired by his vision and commitment to further sexual and reproductive rights for all.  And, we are enormously proud to appoint him to be IPPF’s Director General for the coming four years”. Dr Alvaro Bermejo, IPPF’s Director General, said: “I am immensely proud to have been reappointed for a second and final term as IPPF’s Director-General to continue leading a dedicated global team in the fight for sexual and reproductive health and rights for all. “While I am under no illusion about the tremendous amount of work we have ahead of us if we are to deliver on our bold strategic vision while we navigate our way past the global pandemic and other challenges. I am confident that IPPF and our Member Associations will continue to innovate, transforming not just sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights but also how we express our sexuality and gender and how we love one another. “Over the next four years, I promise to lead IPPF with integrity, self-awareness and humility, paving the way for others within the organization, the development sector and beyond, as we work towards creating a better world for all. “ For media inquiries please contact [email protected] 

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| 05 November 2021

IPPF reappoints Dr Alvaro Bermejo as Director-General

The International Planned Parenthood Federation’s (IPPF) Board of Trustees has reappointed Dr Alvaro Bermejo to a second and final four year-term as Director-General of IPPF through to 2026. Under his leadership, IPPF radically transformed its governance structure and resource allocation system so that its Member Associations and young people are the centre of its work. Kate Gilmore, Chair of IPPF’s Board of Trustees, said: “Under Alvaro’s leadership, IPPF has transformed its governance system and resource allocation process; making changes that once seemed beyond reach. Thanks to the courage and determination that Alvaro displayed throughout his first term of office, those reforms succeeded, being met with unanimous support by the General Assembly of our Member Associations. “Today, IPPF faces more challenges.  Credible, principled, and highly skilled leadership is essential to unite and sustain IPPF behind a bold and daring strategic vision for its global contribution to sexual and reproductive health and rights over the years ahead.  Ethical, humble, and impassioned leadership is essential if IPPF is to join, as we must, the wider international development sector in confronting and dismantling legacies of colonialism, racism, and discrimination. “That is why we are so delighted that Alvaro has accepted a second term of office.  As the IPPF Board of Trustees we stand with him.  We believe in and are inspired by his vision and commitment to further sexual and reproductive rights for all.  And, we are enormously proud to appoint him to be IPPF’s Director General for the coming four years”. Dr Alvaro Bermejo, IPPF’s Director General, said: “I am immensely proud to have been reappointed for a second and final term as IPPF’s Director-General to continue leading a dedicated global team in the fight for sexual and reproductive health and rights for all. “While I am under no illusion about the tremendous amount of work we have ahead of us if we are to deliver on our bold strategic vision while we navigate our way past the global pandemic and other challenges. I am confident that IPPF and our Member Associations will continue to innovate, transforming not just sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights but also how we express our sexuality and gender and how we love one another. “Over the next four years, I promise to lead IPPF with integrity, self-awareness and humility, paving the way for others within the organization, the development sector and beyond, as we work towards creating a better world for all. “ For media inquiries please contact [email protected] 

The American flag with stars and stripes
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| 21 February 2022

Statement on the first anniversary of the rescindment of the Global Gag Rule

28 January 2022 heralds one year since President Biden rescinded the harmful Global Gag Rule (GGR). Otherwise known as the Mexico City Policy, its expansion in 2017 under Trump affected 12 billion dollars of funding, impacting thousands of life-saving healthcare services worldwide – especially across low-income countries. But while rescindment is a positive first step, the long-term harm of the Global Gag Rule lingers on. For IPPF, 53 healthcare projects in 32 countries were hit, with some Member Associations losing up to 60% of their funding. Programmes affected include HIV prevention and care, maternal health and nutrition, STI services, gender-based violence prevention, and services for vulnerable children. And although we have begun to re-establish long-standing partnerships, it takes time for funding to flow and to re-open closed healthcare clinics and community services – with some lost forever. In the meantime, there are women and girls who desperately need healthcare that have nowhere to turn. But in February, the US Congress has an opportunity to change the sexual and reproductive health landscape forever through a final negotiated funding bill that includes a permanent end to the deadly Global Gag Rule. As we celebrate one year of rescindment, we know the work is not done yet, but we are hopeful for the futures of millions of women and girls worldwide. We urge the US Congress to permanently repeal the Global Gag Rule to fully eradicate the lasting impact of the Mexico City Policy that has harmed women and girls around the world for 40 years.   Dr Alvaro Bermejo, Director-General of the International Planned Parenthood Federation, said: "Five years ago, Trump expanded the Global Gag Rule, a devastating neo-colonialist policy that forbids US aid to any organization that supports access to safe abortion care, disproportionately affecting women and girls in low-income countries. Today we mark one year since President Biden rescinded it, but the long-term harm and impacts don't simply go away.  "The Gag Rule is a callously designed mechanism set up to deny women and girls the right to decide what happens to their bodies. Its implementation doesn't just destroy life-saving abortion services but erodes access to other sexual and reproductive healthcare, including contraception, leading ultimately to increases in unintended pregnancy and forcing many to turn to unsafe and dangerous abortion methods.   "While rescindment is a positive first step, the looming threat of reinstatement under future anti-rights administrations undermines the sustainability of global sexual health programs and the pace of progress. After 40 long years, the time to act is now – we urge the US Congress to end this political game and stand up for the futures of millions of at-risk women and girls by permanently repealing the Global Gag Rule.  "By leaving a legacy that gives hope and stability to the sexual and reproductive health of people worldwide, the US will once again be a champion, leader, and innovator of human rights for all." For media inquiries please contact [email protected] 

The American flag with stars and stripes
media_center

| 28 January 2022

Statement on the first anniversary of the rescindment of the Global Gag Rule

28 January 2022 heralds one year since President Biden rescinded the harmful Global Gag Rule (GGR). Otherwise known as the Mexico City Policy, its expansion in 2017 under Trump affected 12 billion dollars of funding, impacting thousands of life-saving healthcare services worldwide – especially across low-income countries. But while rescindment is a positive first step, the long-term harm of the Global Gag Rule lingers on. For IPPF, 53 healthcare projects in 32 countries were hit, with some Member Associations losing up to 60% of their funding. Programmes affected include HIV prevention and care, maternal health and nutrition, STI services, gender-based violence prevention, and services for vulnerable children. And although we have begun to re-establish long-standing partnerships, it takes time for funding to flow and to re-open closed healthcare clinics and community services – with some lost forever. In the meantime, there are women and girls who desperately need healthcare that have nowhere to turn. But in February, the US Congress has an opportunity to change the sexual and reproductive health landscape forever through a final negotiated funding bill that includes a permanent end to the deadly Global Gag Rule. As we celebrate one year of rescindment, we know the work is not done yet, but we are hopeful for the futures of millions of women and girls worldwide. We urge the US Congress to permanently repeal the Global Gag Rule to fully eradicate the lasting impact of the Mexico City Policy that has harmed women and girls around the world for 40 years.   Dr Alvaro Bermejo, Director-General of the International Planned Parenthood Federation, said: "Five years ago, Trump expanded the Global Gag Rule, a devastating neo-colonialist policy that forbids US aid to any organization that supports access to safe abortion care, disproportionately affecting women and girls in low-income countries. Today we mark one year since President Biden rescinded it, but the long-term harm and impacts don't simply go away.  "The Gag Rule is a callously designed mechanism set up to deny women and girls the right to decide what happens to their bodies. Its implementation doesn't just destroy life-saving abortion services but erodes access to other sexual and reproductive healthcare, including contraception, leading ultimately to increases in unintended pregnancy and forcing many to turn to unsafe and dangerous abortion methods.   "While rescindment is a positive first step, the looming threat of reinstatement under future anti-rights administrations undermines the sustainability of global sexual health programs and the pace of progress. After 40 long years, the time to act is now – we urge the US Congress to end this political game and stand up for the futures of millions of at-risk women and girls by permanently repealing the Global Gag Rule.  "By leaving a legacy that gives hope and stability to the sexual and reproductive health of people worldwide, the US will once again be a champion, leader, and innovator of human rights for all." For media inquiries please contact [email protected]