Target: Pope Francis, Head of the Catholic Church
Goal: Stop dissuading the relaxation of abortion laws in countries where newborns might be affected by the Zika virus.
Abortions remain strictly illegal in many South American countries despite the fact that the Zika virus has been spreading fast in the region. If contracted by pregnant women, it can lead to their newborn babies suffering from serious malformations and brain defects. In light of this, international bodies have urged South American countries to relax their strict anti-abortion laws.
However, the Vatican has stepped in, claiming that these women should not be allowed to have abortions, no matter whether their babies are at risk serious health problems. Babies born to mothers who had Zika can have microcephaly, a condition wherein the infant’s head is far smaller than usual, which can cause brain damage and incapacitation.
With abortions illegal in Brazil and other countries concerned, women are turning to unsafe methods of inducing miscarriages, such as abortion pills. This is not a safe solution to the issue and the Church should not be actively dissuading countries from doing what’s right by their citizens. Sign this petition demanding the Vatican stop discouraging countries affected by the Zika virus to relax their abortion laws.
Dear Pope Francis,
Vatican officials have deemed abortion an “illegitimate response” to the Zika virus. But in light of the severity of health issues that can be inherited by babies born to pregnant women who contracted the virus and the lack of a vaccine or treatment, it is the only solution. Failing to allow women to terminate their pregnancies will result in large-scale health problems for the citizens of effected countries.
Your Church’s representatives should not be dissuading governments from finding solutions to this crisis but instead helping them do what’s right by their citizens. I urge you to take a firm stance on this issue and ensure Church representatives stop discouraging countries from letting women do what’s best for themselves and their children.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Greyerbaby