Sad news of the loss of this vital program that has helped so many women:
Following changes to the Dutch abortion law, the organisation Women on Waves has decided to cancel all upcoming trips of its so-called abortion boat. Opposition to abortion is growing, says director Rebecca Gomperts.
A decade ago, Rebecca Gomperts (1966) had a vision. With her organisation Women on Waves (WoW) she would run a floating clinic that women with unwanted pregnancies all over the world could turn to for help. Gomperts saw herself as the “abortion captain”. “I figured we would sail from country to country and help x number of women per day.”
At one point Gomperts envisaged an entire fleet of abortion boats registered in the Netherlands. They would anchor in international waters and carry out abortions, distribute medication and train local staff. For Gomperts it was her way to right an enormous wrong: the 20 million women who undergo illegal abortions every year worldwide, and especially the 68,000 women who die as a result each year – a plane crash a day.
Ten years later, as WoW prepares to celebrate its anniversary on September 4 in Amsterdam, expectations have been much lowered. Following recent changes to the Dutch abortion law, WoW has cancelled all upcoming trips of its abortion boat.