Argentina’s legalization of abortion is historic and a major win for the feminist movement. Argentina has become the largest nation to legalize abortion and the waves of change may be felt across Latin America in the coming years.
The bill was passed with a great margin- 38 to 29, with one abstentation. Pro-choice activists had been waiting outside the neoclassical congressional palace for a long long time and erupted into cries of joy after the result was announced.
The Bill legalizes termination in the first 14 weeks of pregnancy. It has been President Alberto Fernández’s campaign promises. After the bill was passed, the President tweeted, “Today, we’re a better society, which widens women’s rights and guarantees public health.”
Grass-root organizations and activists had been working for years, pushing for women’s rights.
Before the passing of the bill, abortions were only permitted in cases of rape or if the woman’s health was at serious risk. Many women lost their lives due to Inaccessibility or unsafe abortion practices.
Argentina is a largely conservative society with strong influence of the Roman Catholic Church. Catholic and Evangelical leaders and supporters had opposed the change and protested against it. However, the efforts of the pro-choice activists finally culminated in the passing of the historic bill.