The right to decide

Oaxaca, Oax. 15 Octubre ’09
By Zihuatl-Mujeres de Palabra

On September 9, 2009 the State Congress of Oaxaca approved a reform in the State Constitution Article 12 to outlaw abortion, effectively violating the rights of women, their reproductive autonomy, and life in general. This reform was initiated last January by Patricia Woolrich, legislator of the Partido Accion Nacional (PAN or National Action Party), a conservative political party in Mexico with ties to the conservative Catholic hierarchy. Oaxaca is now the 16th state in Mexico that approved this reform.

On September 28, the voices of women and men from an array of communities in Oaxaca gathered to protest against the reform at a march that culminated in the zocalo in the Oaxaca City. The President of the State Commission of Human Rights was asked to file inconstitutionality of the reform. However, on September 30th, the Commission declared that there is insufficient evidence to declare inconstitutionality, once again failing its mission as human rights advocates.

derecho a decidir

The state government argues that the reform will “protect the life (of women and men) from conception until death)”. In reality, the reform will increase the number of unsafe abortions and deaths of thousands of women. According to CIMAC, legal and safe abortions saves the lives of more than 29,000 women every year in Mexico City alone.

photo: consorcio para el Dialogo Parlamentario y la Equidad Oaxaca