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Simone Veil and abortion's law in France

This is not something I found on WomenWatch, but I think this story is worth spreading. Simone Veil is considered as some kind of hero and she is the favorite female figure in France. She is also a great source of inspiration for women here (including me) and she made a lot of things to improve women rights and safety in France.

She was born in 1922 in Paris and is a survivor of Auschwitz concentration camp, where she lost part of her family. After the war, she worked first for the French Ministry of Justice.

In 1974, she became Minister of Health.

The 26th July 1974, she proposed the law about IVG (abortion) at the French National Assembly. The story says that when her predecessor at the Health Ministry leave her the office, he told her that she has to legislate about abortion or she will have an illegal abortion in her own office (because it was common, about 300 000 in France in 1973, even if it was forbidden and dangerous) She was a women of the "right" but this law was more backup by the politicians of the "left". There have been a very though fight and she has been insulted even from politician of her side (right, usually traditionalists). She hold on and the law was voted 3 days later.

Quote from a her speech : "First, I would like to share a woman's conviction, I apologize to it in front of an assembly made almost exclusively by men : no woman ever resort to abortion with pleasure , you just have to hear the women, it is always a tragedy, it will always be a tragedy"

She has also made contraception more accessible, with a law allowing payback of contraception by the state (Social Security) and no more parental authorization requirement for minors to get contraception.

After that, she has been elected president of the European Parliament (she was the first woman to do that) from 1979 to 1982. Then, she has been member of the Constitutional Council and she is now a member of the "Académie Française" (the members of this institution are called Immortals, and they are supposed to help preserve and evolve French language)

Views: 4875

Comment by Iyamuremye Jean de Dieu on April 12, 2010 at 5:56pm
What is a lesson do you want to share?
Comment by Edwige Lelievre on April 12, 2010 at 6:06pm
I want to share an example of politician braviour and success about women rights, hoping this this will encourage other politicians to such braviour in their country.

The life of Simone Veil is also a message of hope for all women suffering from war now in the world. Her life, from concentration camp to president of European parliament shows it is important never to give up : whatever atrocity we have to face, there is a chance of recover from it and make great things.
Comment by Michele Baron on April 18, 2010 at 1:03am
thank you for the strength of this post


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