In a historic move, Mexico has passed a ground-breaking law to decriminalise abortion, expanding reproductive rights for millions of women and people with the capacity to gestate across the nation. The legislation, which was approved by Mexico’s Supreme Court on Wednesday 6 September 2023, represents a significant step forward in the fight for women's rights and autonomy.
Mexico becomes one of the latest countries in Latin America and the Caribbean to loosen its strict abortion regulations. This development comes as a result of tireless advocacy efforts by feminist’s organisations, civil society organisations and activists, who have long pushed for more inclusive and compassionate reproductive policies.
The work of civil society organisations continues to be crucial for advocating for the sexual and reproductive rights of women and people with the capacity to gestate. Therefore, it is essential to ensure the resources and funding for organised civil society as a collective force against hate speech and anti-rights narratives.Fernanda Vázquez, Elige Red of Youth for Sexual and Reproductive Rights.
The passing of this law signifies a significant shift in Mexico's stance on reproductive rights, acknowledging the importance of women's choices regarding their own bodies.
Nonetheless, there is still a long path to decriminalise abortion nationwide. The legal implications of this reform have their limitations to federal institutions like ISSSTE and IMSS; many of the states within Mexican territory still criminalise abortion.
While the legislation has faced opposition from conservative groups, it marks a critical moment in the ongoing global conversation surrounding reproductive rights and gender equality.
Today in Mexico, criminalisation has been directly questioned. We don't need more categorisation of crimes; we need our rights to be guaranteed, our autonomy to be respected, and to be recognised as persons with the capacity to decide about our bodies, our lives, and our futures.Alma Burciaga-González, Girls Not Brides representative for Latin America and the Caribbean.
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