Farah Diaz-Tello is a U.S. human rights attorney in service of reproductive justice, focusing in particular of the rights of pregnant and birthing people. She is Senior Counsel for the SIA Legal Team, where she works to ensure that people can end their own pregnancies outside of the formal medical system with dignity and without fear of arrest. An NYC-based Texpat, Farah serves on the boards of All-Options and the Family Law Cannabis Alliance.
A proposal in the U.K. Parliament would change a 19th-century criminal law that allows prosecution of people who end their own pregnancies. And in New York state, a bill moving through the legislature would remove abortion, including self-induced abortion, from the penal code.
Tamara Loertscher has been embroiled in a suit with the State of Wisconsin challenging the constitutionality of the 20-year-old law that led to her jail time. On Friday, a federal judge blocked the law—finally marking some good news after months of legislative attacks on reproductive rights in the state.
Purvi Patel's 41-year sentence for contradictory charges is a glaring reminder of the fact that abortion’s legal status in the United States does not mean prosecutions for pregnancy loss can’t happen here.
Women were once seen as "second victims" of abortion. Now, as women face murder trials for unintended pregnancy losses, they're potential fodder for a prison system that is steadily becoming one of the biggest businesses in the country.
From a tragic case in Massachusetts has emerged a rule affirming women’s fundamental personhood: “All births, regardless of venue, carry inherent risks; in the ordinary course, competent women who are pregnant may weigh these risks themselves and make decisions about the course of their own pregnancies and childbirths.”
Abortion is morally defensible because women are the best arbiters of whether or not they are ready to bear a child, not because it is a way for society to prevent the births of babies perceived as undesirable.