The right of women to exert a choice regarding their reproductive behaviour is a fundamental right within the context reproductive rights. Reproductive rights and health encompass the exertion of individual choice but also adequate, safe and accessible health care services. Within this framework, the right to abortion and the right to access to safe abortion services is an integral part of reproductive rights and health. Reproductive rights and the right of women to choose the outcome of their reproductive behaviour, came to the foreground in terms of population policies and programmes that were concerned with rapid population growth. The widespread use of contraception and family planning programmes and the outcomes thereof, led to a focus on the rights of women in totality as well as the personal exertion of their choices. It is important to investigate the reasons that lead women to make a decision to terminate a pregnancy. In terms of demographics, answers are provided in terms of statistical rankings and weightings but no focus is given to the personal situations, circumstances and experiences of women. This is crucial to be able to determine the reasons for women terminating a pregnancy as reasons and sets of reasons are intricately linked within primary and secondary relationships. No reason stands in isolation to another, and a holistic view of a woman’s true and personal reality is required to understand why some women choose to terminate their pregnancy and other choose an alternate outcome.
Dissertation (MA (Demography))--University of Pretoria, 2006.