Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Ground-breaking knowledge on PEI women’s abortion access

For Immediate Release

Ground-breaking knowledge on PEI women’s abortion access
CHARLOTTETOWN, PEI, January 22, 2014 – Understanding the impacts of PEI’s abortion policies on women’s lives will be the focus for research presentations from the Understanding for a Change project to be released Tuesday, January 28, by Dr. Colleen MacQuarrie and her research team at the University of Prince Edward Island. The presentation will take place on campus at UPEI in MacDougall Hall, Room 242 from 6:30-8:00 p.m.
Dr. MacQuarrie says, “We have some chilling new data and some ground-breaking research to report from our two-year inquiry into the impacts of PEI’s abortion policies. The effects we have found on women’s health, including some recently uncovered provincial statistics regarding illegal abortions in PEI, are eye-opening.”

The release is timed to coincide with the anniversary of the 1988 Supreme Court of Canada’s Morgentaler decision which struck down abortion laws as contravening women’s human rights. The evening will include a series of presentations from members of the research team to highlight issues of concern to Islanders. What happens on an Island when you create the conditions of blocking access to safe abortions? How does abortion stigma impact on women’s lives? What happens to Island women when their attempts to self induce go awry? What do women have to say about their post-abortion experiences? These questions and more will be addressed.

Additionally, the presenters will share recommendations for change that come from women reflecting on their post-abortion experiences.  Members of the public are encouraged to attend to gain a better understanding of women’s experiences with accessing abortion.

Dr. MacQuarrie says, “Our research reveals a solid direction for women’s health to better align PEI with the principles of the Canada Health Act and the recommendations from both the United Nations and the World Health Organization on access to safe abortion.” The event will be moderated by Jane Ledwell, Executive Director of the Advisory Council on the Status of Women.
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Dr. Colleen MacQuarrie (902) 566-0617 or email cmacquarrie@upei.ca
Psychology Department
University of Prince Edward Island