2020 is undeniably a tough time for the world due to the ongoing public health crisis brought by the coronavirus. However, due to the current battle against Covid-19, the issues relating to women’s rights and women’s reproductive and sexual health are being swept under the rug. Alongside this is the issue regarding access to abortion.
Reproductive healthcare services, such as safe abortion, are crucial as they can save women’s lives. Thus, this should not be undermined even in times of a pandemic. On the other hand, unintended pregnancies are expected to spike during public health crises or disasters.
During the last 2 weeks in March 2020, the calls received by the Action Canada for Sexual Health and Rights’ 24-hour line has increased by 30%. While the Women’s Global Network for Reproductive Rights in the Philippines has also received a substantial increase in email queries regarding possible options for accidental pregnancies.
Those who are in public office must also put importance and take practical actions on the issues surrounding the increasing rates of unintended pregnancies. Additionally, it is also crucial to provide support for women’s rights organizations and human rights advocates who are fighting for equality and structural change.
At the Women Rights Canada Volunteers, we believe that now is the best time we can show our support for those who are being neglected.