Gone are the days when the phrase “illegal abortion” used to create images of medical providers with dubious credentials, dingy back alley clinics, an evocative object – the coat hanger often used as a protest symbol. However, these images are now outdated, fitting in a pre-Roe era.
In the recent conditions, the real deal of abortion is now online, as a group of reproductive rights activists use the internet as a tool to spread the awareness about how to use these abortion pills.
The introduction of misoprostol and mifepristone which when taken together effectively induce abortion 95% to 98% of the time are a boon to the mankind as they terminate an unwanted pregnancy without a hostile medical procedure or surgery.
Moreover, women can take these pills on their own without the assistance of a doctor to induce an abortion. It is possible to avoid the clinic entirely as these pills can be brought online.
People who are in search for DIY abortions have several places to seek refuges like safe2choose, ReproAction, and Plan C. But some sites like SASS (Self-Managed Abortion, Safe & Supported), offers an access to any counsellor willing to guide visitors through the grueling process of DIY abortion, answering any queries they may have, even about their own specific condition.
SASS is an online advising service—offered by Women Help Women, an international abortion activist group—launched in April 2017. Outside the U.S., Women Help Women actually ships abortion pills. But citing the U.S. regulation’s legally prohibiting this type of service, SASS works in a different manner.
When a woman approaches SASS, the organization makes sure that the woman receives a complete and precise guide regarding the DIY abortion. Covering an array of questions like what to expect during the abortion process, what you should tell a doctor if you land in the emergency room — especially if you’re in a state where self-managed abortion is illegal, places where abortion pills can be obtained, what kind of complications require a visit to the hospital, and, how to safely induce abortion using both mifepristone and misoprostol or just misoprostol alone.
For women with more detailed questions, there is a supplementary alternative: a net-based help line that connects the SASS counsellors based outside the U.S. with the users. Women simply need to put forward their queries through a secure portal and their answers are posted within a few hours through randomized links.
The major obstacle is to find these pills in the first place. SASS lists several options. Misoprostol (which is frequently prescribed to prevent ulcers and on its own is 85 percent effective when used to terminate a pregnancy) can sometimes be acquired from a doctor, veterinarian, or over the counter in a country like Mexico.
Various online dispensaries sell abortion pill kits, but these kits can be of dubious quality, expensive, and slow to arrive. Thus, Plan C provided a report card that assesses different services.
Projects like SASS are determined to safeguard that no matter what, we are not retreating to the coat hanger era regarding our reproductive rights. By offering legal advice, information, and emotional support, DIY abortion activists are flooring a way for a novel future of reproductive rights, where knowledge is the most puissant tool for ensuring bodily anatomy.