Population Connection Action Fund’s senior vice president for media and government relations, Brian Dixon, issued the following statement in response to President Trump’s executive action to enforce the Global Gag Rule:
“It took no time at all for President Trump to cut off access to healthcare for women and girls around the world by choosing to impose the Global Gag Rule as one of his first executive actions. With this diktat, the Trump-Pence administration has made clear to women everywhere that their lives are little more than props in a tired act of political pandering to extremists.
This policy puts health providers in an untenable position. They can either: accept new restrictions that prevent them from using funds from non-U.S. government sources to provide women with information about and access to the full range of their legal reproductive health options in their own countries; or, they can reject the restrictions and lose desperately needed support for family planning services and contraceptive supplies. Either choice hurts the women that rely on them.
We know how this ends, because a similar policy was imposed from 2001 to 2009. Clinics closed. Contraceptive supplies withered. Abortion rates skyrocketed – nearly all unsafe. Women and families suffered. There is simply no excuse for this action when the evidence that it is both cruel and stupid is clear. It turns out that Trump is intent on punishing women around the world for experiencing unintended pregnancy.
Trump may gag health care providers in the developing world, but we won’t be silent and neither will the tens of millions of Americans offended by this perversion of America’s fundamental values. The fight is just beginning.”