Medical Professionals Concerned About Maternal Care
On the one-year anniversary of the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization ruling overturning Roe v. Wade, a Kaiser Family Foundation poll has found that obstetricians/gynecologists (OBGYNs) are concerned about the negative effects the ruling has had on maternal care. The Supreme Court’s decision allows states to ban or restrict the availability of abortion access. Currently, twenty-four states have near-total abortion bans or gestational limits in place, or are planning to implement such restrictions. Key findings show that approximately two-thirds of OBGYNs surveyed say pregnancy-related mortality has worsened. In addition, sixty percent of OBGYNs surveyed in states with abortion bans expressed concern about their own legal risk making decisions about patient care, and about forty percent say they have faced constraints on their care for miscarriages and pregnancy-related emergencies. Furthermore, seventy percent of OBGYNs nationwide believe the restrictions have exacerbated racial and ethnic inequalities in maternal health. States that support abortion access have increased their access points for these services through telehealth options and later-term clinics for those facing delays in treatment.
Prison Riot in Honduras Kills Dozens of Women
Forty-six women were slaughtered after a riot broke out between gang members in a Honduras prison. Inmates were shot, stabbed with machetes, and beaten, with survivors then set on fire. Officials say that the conflict was planned by members of the Barrio 18 gang, who smuggled in weaponry and overcame the guards before the attack. Julissa Villanueva, head of the prison system, suggested that tensions were heightened because of recent attempts by authorities to crack down on illicit activity within the prison. Gangs yield broad power and control within Honduras, both on the streets and within prisons. President Xiomara Castro, who has launched a crackdown on gangs, said she was “shocked by the monstrous murder of women.” She fired the standing Security Minister Ramón Sabillón and replaced him with Gustavo Sánchez, who had been serving as head of the National Police. The government will return control of the country’s penal system to the military police in response to the riot.
UN Secretary-General Urges Increased Support for Sudan
The United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, warned of Sudan’s “descent into death and destruction,” and urged countries to increase their support. At an UN-led event, Guterres appealed for three billion in funding to help assist people in Sudan fleeing to neighboring countries. He continued to say, “without strong international support, Sudan could quickly become a locus of lawlessness, radiating insecurity across the region." The United States also issued the first sanctions on South Sudanese officials this week. The Treasury Department said it was focusing on conflict-related sexual violence by sanctioning James Nando, a military officer who is accused of overseeing forces that raped hundreds of women and girls between 2018 and 2021. Alfred Futuyo, a governor of Western Equatoria, is also being sanctioned for allegedly carrying out numerous attacks in his state that led to the abduction and gang rape of hundreds of civilians.