Laws Prohibiting Sex-Selective Abortion in the United States: Ending Gender Discrimination or Perpetuating Xenophobia?

Thursday, April 24, 2014 - 12:15pm - 1:30pm
Room IV


As part of the anti-abortion movement's legislative campaign, seven states have passed bans on sex-selective abortion and many more are pending, including in Congress. Advocates of the bans argue that they are needed to prevent widespread elimination of female fetuses by Asians in the United States. They argue that the United States is contributing to the global pandemic of "missing women" and that sex-selective abortion must be banned to promote women's equality. Opponents of these bills point out that they are a "wolf in sheep's clothes" couched in the language of women's equality, but restricting women's autonomy and unfairly stigmatizing minorities. Students in the International Human Rights Clinic at the University of Chicago Law School have been working with economists and the National Asian Pacific Women's Forum to draft a report that will bring empirical data to bear on these policy debates. Miriam Yeung of the National Asian Pacian Pacific American Women's Forum; Sujatha Jesudason of the CoreAlign think tank at the University of California, San Francisco; Arindam Nandi of the Center for Disease Dynamics, Economics, and Policy; Alexander Persuad of the University of Michigan, and students from the clinic will discuss their work on these issues. Sponsored by Law Students for Reproductive Justice, the International Human Rights Clinic, South Asian Law Students Association, and Asian Pacific American Law Students Association.