Starting last autumn, massive demonstrations against the near-total ban on abortion have swept through the streets of Polish cities and towns under the banner of Women’s Strike – the country’s biggest protests in recent history.
On 22 October 2020, the Polish Constitutional Tribunal declared that the right to abort in the event of grave and irreversible foetal defects is unconstitutional, thus rejecting the most common of the few legally allowed bases for abortion in the predominantly Catholic country. This once again reveals how the Polish government is using the country’s ‘reformed’ state institutions for its own authoritarian purposes. The new law means the tightening of an anti-abortion law that has already been one of the most restrictive in Europe. The size and power of the protests that followed were enormous, the protesters’ determination impressive. Polish women continue to fight for their right to decide on issues involving their own bodies.
by Włodek Ciejka for the Naprzód Foundation, a member organisation of transform! europe