#Fight4HER is focused on mobilizing action against Trump’s Global Gag Rule and in support of the newly renamed bill to block it, the Global Health, Empowerment, and Rights (HER) Act. Activists, organizers, and community leaders around the country are working together to take direct action that puts pressure on members of Congress to support the HER Act. We demand increased access to international family planning programs to ensure that every woman, girl, and anyone seeking care can make their own healthcare decisions without exceptions.
Author and human rights activist Lisa Shannon has been on the ground in the Congo talking to the women and girls affected by U.S. cuts in aid to international family planning programs. See and hear the real-world stakes of the #Fight4HER Campaign in the video below:
What is Trump’s Global Gag Rule?
Trump’s Global Gag Rule bars any foreign non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that receive any U.S. global health aid from even discussing safe, legal abortion with their patients. That means these providers (clinics, hospitals, mobile health projects, etc.) can’t provide safe abortions to women who want them, or offer counselling and referrals for legal abortion. Moreover, these providers are unable to speak out about legal abortion as a policy matter in their own countries. It’s a cruel, counterproductive policy that forces providers of health care to some of the most vulnerable people in the world to make an impossible choice: they can either accept the appalling conditions on U.S. aid and deny their patients full and accurate information about the full range of their health care options; or, they can reject the conditions and lose out on desperately needed funds to provide contraceptives, vaccinations, and care to address HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases. It has already disqualified some of the most experienced, effective aid groups in the world. The full impact of Trump’s Global Gag Rule are still being determined, but nobody doubts that the results will be devastating.
The Global Health, Empowerment, and Rights (HER) Act
The Global Health, Empowerment, and Rights Act (Global HER Act) (S. 210/H.R. 671), introduced in the Senate by Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and in the House by Representative Nita Lowey (D-NY), would create a permanent, legislative repeal of the Global Gag Rule. The bill currently has 46 co-sponsors in the Senate and 137 in the House of Representatives.
The Global Health, Empowerment, and Rights (HER) Act would:
- Ensure that eligible foreign NGOs can continue to operate U.S.-supported health programs abroad, particularly those that provide legal health services to women — including counseling, referral, and legal abortion services — with their own, non-U.S. funds;
- Guarantee that foreign NGOs will not be forced to sacrifice their right to free speech in order to participate in U.S.-supported programs abroad;
- Help expand access to health programs for women around the world to improve health and development outcomes for entire families, communities, and developing countries.