Women's reproductive health access is about to change drastically for women all over the world. Delivering on his campaign promises, President Trump has just signed an executive order to reinstate the Global Gag Rule. This was first established under President Ronald Reagan in 1984 and is officially called the Mexico City policy. This executive order will restrict U.S. funding of international nongovernmental organizations that offer family planning and reproductive healthcare services.

Global Gag Rule

Every year the United States helps make family planning and reproductive healthcare programs available to over 27 million women around the world.

These programs supply women with contraceptive services and supplies and costs about $600 million. Absolutely none of this money goes for abortions. In 1973, the Helms amendment prohibited U.S. tax dollars from funding overseas abortions. This amendment has not been overturned nor altered. Some Republican officials argue that the Helms amendment is not strong enough on its own and that the Global Gag Rule will help to enforce it. This was the first executive order that Trump signed on Monday just after witnessing the hugely successful Women's March on Saturday. It seems that President Trump was not listening to the more than 2.9 million people who marched for women's rights over the weekend.

Severe consequences for women

During his 2016 presidential campaign, Trump stated that there should be some kind of punishment for women who receive abortions. It seems that this is the path he has started on today, as many women around the world will be subjected to serious implications. This restriction could prove deadly for many women and young girls in underdeveloped countries and war zones.

The World Health Organization has estimated that 21 million women undergo unsafe abortions every year in underdeveloped nations. When denied access to safe abortions, these women and young girls are forced to resort to extremely dangerous methods to end their pregnancies. These methods account for 13% of all maternal deaths.

President Clinton did away with the Global Gag Rule, and it was not reinstated by Republican President Bush. The new Trump administration has their eyes on women's rights. It seems that this is just the beginning for what will most likely be a battle for freedom of choice and equality for women during the next four years.