Target: President of El Salvador, Salvador Sanchez Ceren
Goal: Protect the rights of pregnant women seeking abortions in El Salvador
For a decade, the nation of El Salvador has criminalized all forms of abortion and has even jailed women for having a miscarriage. This law has caused extreme suffering for many women and girls who are forced to carry their pregnancies to term despite their circumstances. For many who are desperate, extreme solutions are pursued despite its consequences. President Salvador Sanchez Ceren needs to recognize and acknowledge the rights of women and girls and repeal the law that criminalizes abortion in the country.
Universal abortions are criminalized in El Salvador. This means that no matter if the pregnancy was conceived under circumstances such as rape, incest, or even consent, the woman is forced to carry the pregnancy to term. Even miscarriages, which are a common occurrence for those trying to conceive, can lead to a woman being incarcerated as the police consider miscarriages to be homicides. Disturbingly, a recent case involving a nine-year-old survivor of assault was forced to carry her pregnancy to term even though she didn’t understand how or why she was pregnant.
The health care in this country is abysmal, where providers are forbidden from saving a woman’s life if the pregnancy is deemed life threatening. Even those who do not realize they are pregnant and have a miscarriage can be sentenced up to 40 years in prison. This points to a serious issue of ignorance. Women are seeking desperate solutions, such as using knitting needles, wood, and self-prescribed medication to terminate their pregnancies. El Salvador needs to repeal this law immediately as it violates the bodily rights of women and girls, places them in situations that are hazardous to their health, and creates a society that is resentful of their government.
Dear President Salvador Sanchez Ceren,
Your nation has criminalized universal abortion for a decade, whereby it violates the bodily rights of women and girls who are forced to carry a pregnancy to term no matter the circumstances. Your medical professionals and police officers classify a miscarriage as a homicide, which is not only incorrect, but unfair. Miscarriages are a common occurrence and women should not be sentenced to 40 years in prison for this often unavoidable life event. These long and torturous sentences should be reserved for murderers and rapists, not would-be mothers.
I demand for the immediate repeal of this law. Women and girls should not be forced to a carry a pregnancy to term. Having a baby drastically changes a person’s life, and it is not for your country to impose such a change on a woman or girl. For the health and happiness of females in your country, I implore you to revoke this law.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: U.S. Navy via Wikimedia Commons