Women’s lifetime experiences with induced abortion and current empowerment in Turkey

Ozge Tuncalp, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
Michelle J. Hindin, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

Using the 2008 Turkish DHS, we examined the relationship between history of an induced abortion and current levels of empowerment among 7045 ever married women, ages 15-49. We created three empowerment scores using responses on justification of beating, women’s mobility and women’s status. We compare our results to those from the 2003 Turkish DHS. Overall 19.3% of our sample ever had an abortion. All three of our empowerment scores were positively associated with having an abortion, whereas the religiosity score was negatively associated (p<0.001). The associations with age, number of living children, current contraceptive use, residence and region were all statistically significant (p<0.001). The women who had an abortion were statistically more likely to have higher empowerment scores, even after controlling for all the other variables in our models. Based on our measures, history of abortion is positively associated with empowerment among Turkish women and negatively associated with religiosity.

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Presented in Session 54: Abortion

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