Today Mexico’s Supreme Court is deliberating on whether or not to overturn the 2007 law that legalized abortion in Mexico City.
Primarily meant to help the city’s poorest women, who had received one too many botched abortions at illegal clinics, the law has been met with unrelenting resistance in the Catholic country. Eighty-five percent of gynecologists have declared themselves conscientious objectors, and hospital staff members have been reported as hostile and demeaning, creating unnecessary impediments for women. At right, a woman lays out pictures of women who received abortions, during a demonstration in support of the law. About 8,000 women took advantage of it last year alone.
To see the problems they're grappling with, read more.
With so many doctors objecting, the city’s 14 hospitals have been unable to provide services fast enough, and many women are unable to receive their abortion within the legalized first-trimester limit. Willing doctors have been trained to administer abortion pills and perform speedier (I-don’t-even-want-to-know) abortions. Not surprisingly, problems persist.
To improve treatment, officials are moving low-risk abortions out of overworked hospitals and into smaller public clinics, where they hope staff will be more supportive. But whether or not these improvements can continue hinges on the Supreme Court’s decision, which could come as early as this week.