Women have an inalienable right to control their own bodies. The decision whether or not to bring a pregnancy to term is a woman's alone to make.
All women must have the option of obtaining a safe and legal abortion. When abortion is illegal, it condemns young and poor women to unsafe and sometimes fatal abortion practices. However, abortion is not a desirable form of birth control - it is a final recourse. Preventing pregnancy is the better option. Green philosophy regards women as life-givers, and we see the loss of even a potential for life as regrettable. We should work to create a society in which abortion becomes less necessary.
Our present situation is largely the result of patriarchal attitudes towards sexuality, social pressures to engage in intercourse, inadequate sex education and a lack of available contraceptives. The U.S. has one of the highest teenage pregnancy rates in the western world, along with a lower availability of contraceptives. These facts are not unconnected. Our goal should be an open and tolerant attitude towards sexuality that will lead to greater awareness and knowledge.
The abortion-inducing drug RU 486 has been approved in the U.S. Prescribing of RU 486 has been limited to those doctors who have been qualified to perform surgical abortions. With the number of abortion clinics in this country shrinking due to terrorist attacks against the clinics and their doctors, this RU 486 restriction is effectively denying its availability in most parts of the country.
The Green Party recognizes women's reproductive rights:
Make safe and legal abortions available to all women. Government funding should be available to women who are unable to afford abortions.
Oppose laws that require women of any age to notify or obtain anyone's consent before obtaining an abortion.
Increase research and availability of contraceptives.
Remove conditions which limit the availability and use of RU486.
Set national standards to make adoption easier and more affordable.
Federally fund sex education, public health programs and family planning services.
Promote personal responsibility on the part of both men and women in their reproductive capacities, including voluntary sterilization.
End the forced sterilization of women and the mandatory use of contraceptives, such as Norplant and Depro-Provera. We should provide free removal of these contraceptives from women who have already been coerced to use them.