My Photo
Location: California, United States

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Once upon a time in Romania

Reading today about Romania's Decree 770 ...

Before 1967, the Romanian abortion policy was one of the most liberal in Europe. Because the availability of less drastic contraceptive methods was poor, abortion was the most common means of family planning.

Through a combination of modernization of the Romanian community, the high participation of women in the labor market and a low standard of living, the number of births significantly decreased since the 1950s, reaching its lowest value in 1966. However, the leaders saw the decreasing number of births mainly as a result of the decree issued in 1957 that legalized abortion.

To counter this sharp decline of the population, the Communist Party decided that the Romanian population should be increased from 23 to 30 million inhabitants. In 1967 (1966 according to some sources), decree 770 was authorized by Ceaușescu. Abortion and contraception were declared illegal, except for:

- women over 40 (later raised to 45)
- women who had already borne four children (later raised to five)
- women whose life would be threatened by carrying to term, due to medical complications
- women who were pregnant through rape or incest

To enforce the decree, society was strictly controlled. Contraceptives disappeared from the shelves and all women were forced to be monitored monthly by a gynecologist. Any detected pregnancies were followed until birth ....

I hope the Religious Right doesn't win the upcoming presidential election!


Post a Comment

<< Home