A woman had served a third of her jail time in prison because she had gone through with abortion, but in her habitat, there have been harsh rules restricting abortion to be done.
She was released last Monday after being in jail for 9 years. She did not serve the full thirty years, but at the time when she was arrested, she had been charged for having an abortion after falling while doing chores at home. With that incident, she had killed her unborn daughter, and was prosecuted and sentenced for doing so.
Sara Rogel “never deserved to be in prison,” says Morena Herrera, a feminist activist. She was in the midst of mourning for the loss of her pregnancy, but instead, had to spend her time in jail versus being with her family. She was “justly imprisoned for nine years.”
Rogel spent her nine years in a jail located in Zacatecoluca, which is 35 miles from their capital, San Salvador. She was forced to stay in detention until an Attorney General passed her appeal to be released.
El Salvador has the most strictest bans on abortions and does not have any exceptions including rape or if the mother’s life is at risk. The maximum sentence for this crime is up to 40 years.
Several women have been released from jail after serving some of their sentences that are supposed to be longer than what they’ve served. Even though this is possible, women are being prosecuted for crimes that they are not in charge of due to medical emergencies and such.
There are more women like Rogel, the number accounting to more than 17 that are “unjustly detained in El Salvador after suffering obstetric emergencies,” states Paula Avila-Guillen. She is the executive director of the Women’s Equality Center.
She adds on that these cases “shows the insidious consequences of the absolute criminalization of abortion, resulting in a state that persecutes and jails women at the moment when they most need access to health and protection.
” It is unfair for these women to be thrown in jail for doings that are not on their own will, and justice still needs to be served.