You Can Save Beatriz’s Life: Sign This Petition to El Salvador's President and Supreme Court
Beatriz is a 22-year-old woman from a poor, rural area in El Salvador. She is pregnant with a high risk of maternal mortality and carrying an anencephalic fetus, which means it has no brain and won't survive birth even if Beatriz carries to full term. Beatriz has lupus, worsened by a kidney malfunction, and it is very dangerous for her to be pregnant. But under El Salvador's abortion ban, both Beatriz and any medical staff involved in providing an abortion would face criminal charges.
Beatriz wants to live. She is young woman who wants to raise her infant son alongside her husband. She is a human being with human rights, including the right to enjoy her future, her freedom, and her family. Denying Beatriz life-saving medical care is unacceptable.
In the face of Beatriz’s medical situation, the Maternity Hospital (“Hospital de Maternidad”) has determined that “it is of vital importance that she gets the medical procedure she needs because otherwise there is a high probability of maternal mortality.” Nonetheless, the Prosecutor’s Office has warned that if an abortion is performed they will apply the existing legislation in El Salvador that penalizes all abortions with prison time (up to 50 years for the woman and up to twelve years for the doctors). El Salvador is one of the few countries in the world that does not allow abortion under any circumstance, and there are currently 19 women in prison in El Salvador for having an abortion.
Groups in El Salvador and Latin America are appealing to the international community to intervene and not allow another woman to die or be imprisoned due to the lack of recognition of their most basic human rights. They demand that the authorities in El Salvador guarantee Beatriz’s right to live and raise her infant son.
El Salvador's Ministry of Health, the National Commission of Bioethics, representatives of United Nations, and women’s rights and human rights organizations support the authorization of the therapeutic abortion for Beatriz. The Supreme Court of Justice and the Inter-American Commission of Human Rights have urgent petitions before them seeking Beatriz’s right to have an abortion to save her life.
* Beatriz is a pseudonym to protect privacy.