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Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Palmer on Transnational Abortion Seekers in the 1970s

In the CHR vol. 92 issue 4 (and with free access until Feb. 5) York University History doctoral candidate Beth Palmer writes on assisted self-help for women who were inadequately served (note wild understatement here) by the health system and the law:" Lonely, tragic, but legally necessary pilgrimages’: Transnational Abortion Travel in the 1970s."

Here's the abstract:

This article explores the work of the Calgary Birth Control Association with a particular focus on their referral service to help Albertan women obtain abortions in Seattle. The fact that Canadian women were travelling to the United States for abortions highlights the shortcomings of the Canadian health-care system and the legal changes in the 1969 omnibus bill. Cross-border travel is also compelling evidence for the argument that reproductive rights are an international issue. More particularly, this study demonstrates the tensions that reproductive-rights activists faced in addressing the needs of individual women vs the long-term objective of changing the laws and improving accessibility.

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