Shameless plug: Brandalism and creative resistance to toxic messages about beauty

It’s shameless plug time: I wrote an article on creative resistance to harmful messages about body image in adverts for the Brandalism website. This was a fun one to write because it’s not much text and lots of pictures of amazing feminist art.

A sticker on a bathroom mirror which says: 'Warning reflections may be distorted by socially constructed ideas of beauty'

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Discussion Evening: Feminism & Men

Our next meeting is on Weds 28th Nov, 8:00pm @ The Friends Meeting House [12, Jesus Lane] and the topic is Feminism & Men.

The event is free, the building is accessible, and we will be heading to the Champion of the Thames pub for drinks afterwards.

This is the last meeting of 2012 [as the December meeting falls on boxing day] so lets make it a good’un!

Don’t forget about the vigil in support of survivors tues 27th in market square and the pro-choice action on dec 15th

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Vigil in solidarity with rape survivors, 27th November: CANCELLED

CUSU Women’s campaign have organised a candlelight vigil in solidarity with rape survivors this Tuesday from 6.30pm in Cambridge Market Square – facebook event here .

UPDATE: Unfortunately this event has been cancelled.


Pro-choice action – save the date

Did you know there are THREE ‘crisis pregnancy centres’ locally who give women misinformation about abortion?

In Ely, Cambridge and Newmarket, there are centres run by anti-abortion Christian group Care Confidential, who conceal their anti-abortion stance, pretending to give impartial advice. They say they are accredited by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) but they are known to flout the BACP guidelines and use its name to trick women into using their services.

Feminist Action Cambridge are organising a rally to protest against these bogus advice centres on Saturday 15th December 12pm-1pm. We’ll be in Cambridge City Centre, on the corner of Fitzroy St and New Square, right next to the Grafton Centre and Christs Pieces. We will be there to give information to the local community about these centres and where people can go for reliable pregnancy advice. Come along to voice your opposition, as well as to support the pro-choice cause, at a time when anti-abortion groups are touring the country and becoming more militant in their tactics. While politicians are making noises about reducing access to abortion, we are demanding to improve and extend reproductive freedom for all women.

Sometimes you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone. Get involved and add your voice – to defend women’s right to autonomy over our bodies!

Email feministactioncambridge@gmail.com for more information.


Abortion Mythbusting

We’re going to send a mythbusting tweet on abortion every day for the next few weeks, and we’ll keep updating this page with the new tweets, along with references and links to additional information.

Abortion Fact #1

Roughly one in three UK women will have an abortion during her lifetime.

A banner ad showing three women, one of whom is holding a baby. The text reads: What do you call a woman who's had an abortion? Mother daughter sister friend. No more names.

Sources:

The 1 in 3 figure actually comes from a US study by the Guttmacher Institute. Here in the UK, according to Department of Health statistics (PDF), the age-adjusted rate of abortions per year (not per lifetime) for women aged 15-44 in 2011 was 1.75%.

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Abortion Fact #2

Legal abortion is one of the safest surgical procedures there is, and carries less risk than childbirth.

It’s important to note that this is only true in the case of legal abortions performed by medical professionals. Globally it is estimated that approximately 20 million unsafe abortions are performed annually, with 97% taking place in developing countries. Unsafe abortion is believed to result in approximately 68,000 deaths and millions of injuries annually.

Sources:

Wikipedia: Abortion

Grimes, D. A.; Benson, J.; Singh, S.; Romero, M.; Ganatra, B.; Okonofua, F. E.; Shah, I. H. (2006). “Unsafe abortion: The preventable pandemic” (PDF). The Lancet 368 (9550): 1908–1919. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(06)69481-6. PMID 17126724.

NHS: Abortion Risks

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Abortion Fact #3

Women can need an abortion at any point in their reproductive lives. In 2010 9% of abortion were for girls under 18; 41% ages 18-24; 36% ages 25-34, and 14% age 35 and up.

Sources:

Department of Health: Abortion Statistics, England and Wales: 2010 (PDF)

Found via Education for Choice’s abortion facts.

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Abortion Fact #4

Abortion is extremely unlikely to cause infertility, and women who have abortions can go on to have children later in life.

The exception to this would be in the case that a woman had an infection after receiving an abortion, and did not get the infection treated: in this scenario it would be possible for the infection to have an effect on future fertility. However this would be an extremely rare situation, and abortion normally does not cause infertility.

There are no proven associations between induced abortion and subsequent ectopic pregnancy, placenta praevia or infertility. Women with a previous induced abortion appear to be at an increased risk of infertility in countries where abortion is illegal but not in those where abortion is legal. Published studies strongly suggest that infertility is not a consequence of uncomplicated induced abortion.

Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists

Sources:

NHS: Can having an abortion affect my fertility?

Family Planning Association (FPA): Abortion your questions answered

Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists: Induced termination of pregnancy and future reproductive outcomes – current evidence

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