Expert Opinion by the Center for Reproductive Rights to the Parliament of the Federal Republic of Germany on the Draft Law of the Federal Government on Improving Information on Abortion


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On 6 February 2019, the German government agreed on a draft law to revise §219a of the Penal Code which currently prohibits doctors and other medical professionals from publicly stating that they perform legal abortions and providing medically accurate information on abortion in the public domain. The new draft law would permit medical providers to state on their websites that they perform legal abortions; however, it would continue to restrict their public provision of medically accurate information on abortion care.

The Center submitted an expert opinion to the German Parliament to provide lawmakers with an overview of international human rights standards, public health guidelines, and comparative European law on the regulation of information provision on abortion care. As the submission outlines, international human rights law requires states to decriminalize medical professionals’ provision of information related to legal abortion care and ensure that women can access medically accurate information on safe, legal abortion care, including from their doctors.