In Brazil, the Supreme Court held two public hearings on August 3 and 6 to address decriminalizing abortion.
By International Labour Network of Solidarity and Struggle,
Currently Brazilian legislation allows abortion either when woman life is in danger, or the phoetus is dead, or when pregnancy is due to rape.
The Brazilian Health Ministry estimates that one million abortions are performed each year.
More than 250,000 women are hospitalized as a result of complications from abortions, among them 200 who die as a result of botched abortions.
Providing medical care for them has cost the government more than US$ 130 million over the past decade.
Wealthy and middle-class women have access to safer abortions by resorting to medical professionals willing to perform them.
Poor women, many of whom are black and young, make up a disproportionate number of those who die, become ill or get prosecuted as a result of the procedure.
Debora Diniz, an anthropologist at the University of Brasília, led a research which shows that one out of five 40-year-old women have terminated unwanted pregnancies.
Half of them resorted to abortive medicines which are dangerous for human health instead of clinics which are expensive but safe.
Among them 56% are catholics and 25% from other christian beliefs.
The majority of them are already mothers.
The Women in Struggle Movement (MML) is a working class women organization affiliated to CSP-Conlutas.
They believe that a ruling in favor of decriminalization would be the first step toward legalizing abortion in this nation of 210 million.
For working class women it is critical to win the legalization of abortion.
That decision would allow abortion procedures in public hospitals and clinics which are so much needed by the poor and the working class women.
In Uruguay the legalization of abortion brought the number of women lives lost due to abortion down to zero.
Furthermore, the number of abortions decreased as well.