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Anu Kumar
Anu Kumar is Executive Vice President for Ipas, an international women's reproductive health and rights organization based in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. An anthropologist and public health expert, Dr. Kumar previously worked for the World Health Organization and at the Macarthur Foundation.

Entries by Anu Kumar

Why Is Anti-abortion Extremism Normalized? It Shouldn't Be.

(55) Comments | Posted December 18, 2015 | 7:17 PM

In the wake of the shootings at the Planned Parenthood in Colorado Springs much has been written and said about the role that hate speech has played in sparking the violence. While I certainly agree that this was an act of "stochastic terrorism," there is more at work...

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It will take more than 16 Days: We need culture change

(0) Comments | Posted November 23, 2015 | 7:47 AM

When I think of sexual violence, I think immediately of the horrific cases that are featured in the media: the rapes that occurred on the UNC campus, in the military, the Steubenville case that was captured in film and social media. And then I also think of the case of...

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Abortion Stigma and the Case of Purvi Patel

(15) Comments | Posted April 21, 2015 | 8:51 PM

Indiana, seriously? In a fit of conservative policy and legal bravado, the state seems to be declaring to the world, "We reserve the right to discriminate freely." If you're not the "right" religion, the "right" color, the "right" gender, the "right" sexual identity or you don't make the...

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Stigma Is Contagious

(1) Comments | Posted September 23, 2014 | 4:17 PM

This post was co-authored by Leila Hessini, Ipas Director of Community Engagement & Mobilization, chair of the board of the Global Fund for Women, and a member of the steering committee of inroads--the International Network for the Reduction of Abortion Discrimination and Stigma.

Every day, we read or hear...

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Women in Syria Need More Than Guided Missiles

(1) Comments | Posted September 13, 2013 | 6:05 PM

I've been watching the news about the war in Syria with a mixture of anger and worry. Yes, I'm angry and deeply disturbed when I read about the thousands of people who have been killed and the millions displaced by their own government. And yes, I'm worried about the prospect...

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Bad All Around: Attacks on Women in NC

(5) Comments | Posted July 12, 2013 | 2:24 PM

In 1986, I came to North Carolina because the state, via the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, thought it fit to give me a scholarship to pursue my PhD. Thanks to that funding, I was trained in public health and medical anthropology and have spent the last 20...

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Green (With Envy) About the Gay Rights Movement

(80) Comments | Posted March 27, 2013 | 6:11 PM

I hate to admit it, but I'm jealous -- not full-on green with envy, but definitely a little green on the edges. As a reproductive rights advocate, I'm jealous of the gay rights movement. There, I've said it out loud.

There's a massive cultural shift occurring in the United...

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Do the Candidates Really Care About Abortion and a Woman's Undue Burden?

(3) Comments | Posted October 22, 2012 | 4:50 PM

In this season of presidential and vice presidential debates, those of us who work in reproductive health hold our breath for the inevitable moments when abortion becomes the topic of discussion. I keep waiting for a candidate to actually talk about the lifesaving significance of safe, legal, accessible abortion. But...

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Abortion, the States and the World Health Organization

(102) Comments | Posted August 10, 2012 | 12:47 PM

If you're depressed about the daily efforts in the United States to restrict abortion rights -- not to mention the recent court rulings affirming states' rights to lie to women seeking abortions -- maybe you should pick up the new World Health Organization (WHO)...

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Denying Women Their Rights, Criminalizing Doctors

(11) Comments | Posted April 25, 2012 | 11:58 AM

Last week, Wisconsin Planned Parenthood announced it would no longer provide medical abortion, or abortion using medicines, due to new state regulations that make the procedure onerous.

At a time when the pool of abortion providers is shrinking and abortion clinics are closing, medical abortion can truly...

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What Komen v. Planned Parenthood Teaches Us About Abortion Stigma

(126) Comments | Posted February 6, 2012 | 1:59 PM

It has been quite a whirlwind of a week in the women's health community, hasn't it? Two major women's health organizations, Susan G. Komen for the Cure and Planned Parenthood, battled for women's respect and donations. Two days later the dust is settling and...

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Do U.S. Abortion Restrictions Violate Human Rights?

(480) Comments | Posted October 25, 2011 | 4:32 PM

In a hospital in Nicaragua, after a total ban on abortion was passed, a woman with an ectopic pregnancy was allowed to languish, waiting for her fallopian tube to rupture before a doctor agreed to perform the procedure necessary to save her life and future fertility. Even though there was...

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It's Not a Choice If You Can't Afford It

(9) Comments | Posted April 29, 2011 | 11:25 AM

Along with most Americans, I was appalled that the budget debate in Congress largely ignored the public mandate to create jobs and build the economy, but instead focused on cutting basic health services for women. The primary goal behind the right wing proposal to defund Planned Parenthood was presumably to...

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Legislating Abortion Stigma

(78) Comments | Posted February 19, 2011 | 2:20 PM

This post was co-authored by Leila Hessini, Ipas Director of Community Engagement & Mobilization

Last week, the U.S. House Committee on Energy and Commerce heard three "experts" on abortion policy testify on H.R. 358, the "Protect Life Act," one of several bills before Congress right now aimed at reducing access...

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Honoring Elizabeth Edwards: Standing With Women and Families

(1) Comments | Posted December 16, 2010 | 2:33 PM

The news spread quickly around my hometown, Chapel Hill, and the country last week that members of the Westboro Baptist Church would protest the funeral of Elizabeth Edwards, who passed away on Tuesday after a long battle with cancer. The extremist church has long sought attention by protesting...

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Does the U.S. Care about Women? That Depends on Where They Live

(14) Comments | Posted October 4, 2010 | 9:17 PM

Is the U.S. government schizophrenic when it comes to women's health? The latest evidence that indicates that might be the case is the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) determination that contraception is not preventive care for women and will not be covered without co-pays in the new insurance...

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Punishing the Victim in the Yucatan

(13) Comments | Posted April 27, 2010 | 12:06 PM

In Mexico and throughout North and South America, the story of a little girl who was allegedly attacked by her stepfather is capturing headlines, and once again reviving a debate over abortion. The 10-year-old girl from the state of Quintana Roo, in the Yucatan peninsula, has been sent to social...

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