IPPF welcomes President Biden’s decision to repeal the Global Gag Rule

28th January 2021
Women's Rights are Human Rights protest banner

The International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) welcomes the news of President Biden’s decision to keep his promise and repeal the harmful Global Gag Rule (GGR) – also known as the Mexico City Policy.   

Since its expanded reintroduction in 2017 by the previous administration, the Global Gag Rule has contributed to an increase in unintended and high-risk pregnancies, unsafe abortions – culminating in unnecessary maternal deaths. For IPPF, 53 healthcare projects in 32 countries were impacted by GGR, with some Member Associations losing up to 60% of their funding.  

IPPF’s Director-General, Dr Alvaro Bermejo said:   

“I welcome the decision by President Biden to repeal the Global Gag Rule.

 

“The expanded reintroduction of the gag was callously designed to deny women the right to decide what happens to their body. Whilst we know this policy is intended as a tool to attack abortion care by the anti-choice movement, not only has it led to reproductive coercion, it has cut deeper into healthcare provision: from HIV prevention programs to maternal health to contraceptive access – no one was spared the fallout of this policy.  

 

“What lies ahead of us is years of work to undo the harm caused by Global Gag Rule, and to build back a better and stronger relationship with the US – one where our work is not under threat from future anti-sexual and reproductive health administrations. To protect the rights of future generations of women and girls, we ask that the Biden-Harris administration take the necessary steps to permanently repeal the Global Gag Rule. Without a permanent repeal, the global gag remains a constant threat to women, girls, youth and marginalized communities. Reproductive rights, bodily autonomy and the human right to decide what happens to your body cannot be at the mercy of a pen stroke.  

 

“IPPF looks on with hope and welcomes the opportunity to work closely with the Biden-Harris administration to protect and advance sexual and reproductive healthcare for all.”  

And President and CEO, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Alexis McGill Johnson said: 

“Over the past four years, the United States didn’t just fail to support global reproductive health care access – it actively blocked it. Today, we applaud the beginning of a new chapter, as the Biden-Harris administration puts an end to the devastating global gag rule, which has prevented millions of people around the world from receiving essential health care. We look forward to working alongside the administration and Congress to pass the Global HER Act, to permanently protect access to sexual and reproductive health care across the globe from changes in White House political control. It is long past time that the United States proudly declares to the world that reproductive rights are human rights.”    

IPPF would like to thank the international community who stepped in and stepped up to help fill the funding gap that was left by the Global Gag Rule. Together, we will continue to fight and deliver sexual and reproductive health and rights.