“ProChoiceLife: Asking Who Protects Life and How—And Why It Matters in Law and Politics” by Reva Siegel

December 20, 2017

Congratulations to Prof. Reva Siegel of the Yale Law School, for her insightful article, which has relevance beyond the United States.

Reva Siegel, “ProChoiceLife: Asking Who Protects Life and How—And Why It Matters in Law and Politics” forthcoming in the Indiana Law Journal vol. 93 (2018), Yale Law School, Public Law Research Paper No. 613.  Typescript online.

Government can protect new life in many ways. It can restrict a woman’s access to abortion, help a woman avoid an unwanted pregnancy, or help a pregnant woman bear a healthy child. Yet in debates about abortion we often speak as if restricting abortion is the only way to protect new life, and further, as if governments that restrict abortion are committed to protecting new life and advocates of abortion rights are not.

If we expand the frame and analyze restrictions on abortion as one of many ways government can protect new life, we observe facts that escape notice when we debate abortion in isolation. Jurisdictions that support abortion rights may protect new life in ways that jurisdictions that restrict abortion rights will not. One jurisdiction may protect new life by means that respect women’s autonomy, while another protects new life by means that restrict women’s autonomy.

In this essay I reason from a prochoicelife perspective that asks whether government protects new life by means that respect women’s reproductive decisions. I develop a framework that allows us to compare the policies for protecting new life that governments choose and the values they demonstrate. The essay’s critical framework connects policies on sexual education, contraception, abortion, health care, income assistance, and the accommodation of pregnancy and parenting in the workplace. It shows that some jurisdictions protect new life selectively, favoring policies for protecting new life that restrict women’s reproductive decisions over policies that respect women’s reproductive decisions. Fresh description generates new prescription. Asking who protects life, and how, matters in enforcing the Constitution and in forging coalitions across divided communities.

The full text is online here.
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Compiled by the Coordinator of the International Reproductive and Sexual Health Law Program, reprohealth*law at utoronto.ca For Program publications and resources, see our website, online here. TO JOIN THIS BLOG: enter your email address in upper right corner of this webpage, then check your email to confirm the subscription.


Northern/Irish Feminist Judgments – re-imagining court decisions

May 26, 2017

Northern/Irish Feminist Judgments: Judges’ Troubles and the Gendered Politics of Identity, edited by Máiréad Enright, Julie McCandless and Aoife O’Donoghue (Oxford: Hart, 2017) (available here) is the most recent of a series of insightful studies on re-imagining court decisions from feminist perspectives.[1]    The volume includes rewrites and commentaries on 26 cases from Ireland or Northern Ireland, including:

Attorney General v. X, [1992] I.E.S.C. 1, (Supreme Court of Ireland) had decided that an attempt to prevent a 14-year old girl who was pregnant as a result of being raped, from traveling from Ireland to England in order to access abortion care was not justified.  Actual decision online.

In Northern/Irish Feminist Judgments. Ruth Fletcher rewrites the Irish Supreme Court’s landmark decision in the X case.Sheelagh McGuinness writes a commentary on it, explaining the ways in which Fletcher J. illustrates how the Eighth Amendment to the Irish Constitution (acknowledging the “right to life of the unborn… with due regard to the equal right to life of the mother…”) is an instrument of gendered harms.  McGuinness contrasts the “progressive constitutionalism” of Fletcher J.’s reasoning with the “conservative constitutionalism” of the original judgment. Fletcher J. crafts a judgment that considers the text of the Eighth Amendment, examines the evidence of the substantial difference between the contingency of unborn life and the life of the pregnant woman that sustains that life to decide, consistently with the original judgment, that X is entitled to an abortion. She tries to rise above her own partiality by putting herself in X’s shoes to explain how her pregnancy in such circumstances would impose “an impracticable burden on her rightful life.”
ONLINE:  Ruth Fletcher’s imagined decision: working paper version
Sheelagh McGuinness’s commentary: peer review version

McGee v. Attorney General,[1974] I.R. 284 (Supreme Court of Ireland), which had overturned a criminal ban on the importation of contraceptives into Ireland. Actual decision online.

Emilie Cloatre and Máiréad Enright write the commentary on Enright’s rewriting of the Irish Supreme Court’s decision in the McGee case, where Enright J. reached the same decision but for different reasons. They explore the ways that Enright J. acknowledged Mrs. McGee’s experiences in trying to access effective contraception to enable her to plan her family in ways that did not seriously risk her life.  Of particular note is the way in which Enright J. elaborated how Mrs. McGee’s right to freedom of conscience was a basis for overturning the importation ban: “There can be no clearer example, in my view, of the exercise of constitutionally protected conscience than Mrs. McGee’s deliberate breach of a provision of the criminal law that imposes a particular set of moral principles on the citizenry.”

[1] Northern/Irish Feminist Judgments-Judges’ Troubles and the Gendered Politics of Identity, ed. Máiréad Enright, Julie McCandless and Aoife O’Donoghue (Oxford: Hart, 2017) (book details).  Other insightful studies on re-imagining court decisions from feminist perspectives  include:  Rewriting Equality (2006) 18(1); R. Hunter, C.McGlynn and E. Rackley (eds.) Feminist Judgments: From Theory to Practice (Oxford: Hart, 2010); H. Douglas, F. Bartlett, T. Luker and R. Hunter (eds.), Australian Feminist Judgments: Righting and Rewriting Law (Oxford: Hart, 2015); K. Stanchi, L. Berger and B. Crawford (eds.), U.S. Feminist Judgments: Rewritten Opinions of the United States Supreme Court (Cambridge: CUP, 2016).


REPROHEALTHLAW Updates

May 28, 2015

REPROHEALTHLAW-L  May 28, 2015

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DECISIONS

GENDER JUSTICE OBSERVATORY-  Voting open until May 31, 2015
Vote the Best or Worst Decisions that promote or negatively affect gender equality
View all Nominated Decisions:   English    Spanish
How to vote:  English video    Spanish video

KENYA:  Hospital liable for costs of unwanted child after failure to implant contraceptive.
AAA v. Registered Trustees of Aga Khan University Hospital, Civil Case no. 3 of 2013, High Court of Kenya at Nairobi, Civil Division.
Decision online.    Newspaper summaryDetailed summary by Godfrey Kangaude

PHILIPPINES – Contraception ban in Manila, inquiry report by UN – CEDAW, finds reproductive rights violations and discrimination. CEDAW inquiry report online.   Center for Reproductive Rights Press release.

SOUTH AFRICA – “Ukuthwala (customary law) is not a defence against rape of a child.”
High Court of the Western Cape
Jezile v S (A127/2014) [2015] ZAWCHC (23 March 2015)
Detailed Case Summary of Jezile case.  Entire Judgment.
University of Pretoria’s Centre for Child Law: Press Release

UGANDA – Preventable maternal death and constitutional right to health – Centre for Health, Human Rights and Development (CEHURD) and others v. Attorney General, Constitutional Petition No. 16 of 2011 (Constitutional Court of Uganda) [2012] UGCC 4, 5 June 2012. Decision online.   Legal Comment.    NEWS: Overruled by Supreme Court in 2015.

EVENTS:

“Bioethics, Medical Ethics and Health Law”
UNESCO Chair in Bioethics 11th World Conference
Royal Continental Congress Center
October 20-22, 2015, Naples, Italy  Conference details.

2016 FIAPAC Conference
13 – 15 October 2016
Lisbon, Portugal  Conference details.

RESOURCES

Inspiring a Medico-Legal Revolution: Essays in Honour of Sheila McLean,  ed. Pamela Ferguson and Graeme Laurie (Ashgate,  June 2015)
Book abstract and details .
Part I:  Issues at the Beginning of Life, includes:

1 Reproductive Health and the Law, by Rebecca J. Cook and Bernard M. Dickens,

2 DIY Abortion and Harm Reduction, by Emily Jackson,

3 Parenthood and Artificial Human Reproduction: The Dangers of Inappropriate Medicalisation, by Kenneth McK. Norrie,

4 ‘Fetal Infants’: At the Edge of Life? by Margot Brazier and John Harris.

Abortion Law in Transnational Perspective:  Cases and Controversies, ed. Rebecca J. Cook, Joanna N. Erdman and Bernard M. Dickens, 16 chapters.  University of Pennsylvania Press, 2014, 482 pages. Introduction by the editors: online through SSRN. Book reviewers should contact Gigi Lamm (glamm {a} pobox. upenn. edu) Includes 16 chapters, Table of Legislation, Table of Cases, also online here, with links to abortion-related decisions in English and/or other languages). Table of Contents online here. Purchase info: link to U Penn Press.

[abortion] The Responsibility Objection to Abortion: Rejecting the Notion that the Responsibility Objection Successfully Refutes a Woman’s Right to Choose, by Ian K. McDaniel,  Bioethics, 29.4 (2015)  pp. 291-299, 2015. Abstract online.

[conscience]  Managing Conscientious Objections in Intensive Care Medicine,  An Official American Thoracic Society Policy Statement, by Thaddeus Mason Pope and Mithya Lewis-Newby, Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2015 Jan 15;191(2):219-27. Abstract Online.

[conscience]  Medical Law Review – special issue 23, on Conscience and Proper Medical Treatment, intro Sara Fovargue, Sheelagh McGuinness, Alexandra Mullock, and Stephen Smith
— Medicine and Abortion Law, by Sheelagh McGuinness and Michael Thomson
— Conscientious Objection:  Personal and Professional Ethics in the Public Square, by Jonathan Montgomery
— “In Good Conscience”:  Conscience-based exemptions and Proper Medical Treatment, by Sara Fovargue and Mary Neal
— Making decisions about decision-making: Conscience, Regulation and the Law, by José Miola
— A Bridge too Far: Individualised Claims of Conscience, by Stephen W. Smith
— Gillick Reinstated: Judging Mid-Childhood Competence in Healthcare Law: An NHS Trust v. ABC and a local Authority [2014] EWHC 1445 (FAM)
— Book Review:  Conscience and Conviction: The case for civil disobedience, by Clayton Ó Néill

[Ethics] New guidelines from the FIGO  for the Ethical Aspects of Human Reproduction and Women’s Health, published in the International Journal of Gynecology & Obstetrics (IJGO)
— Health consequences of child or adolescent marriage,  IJGO 128.1, Jan. 2015, pp 83-84. Online
 — Adolescent pregnancies, IJGO  128.2, Feb. 2015, pp. 185-186  Online.
— Conscientious objection in training IJGO 128.1 1, Jan 2015, pp. 89-90  Online.
— Women’s post-reproductive lives, IJGO 128. 2, Feb. 2015, pp. 189-190.  Online.
— Healthcare professionals’ responses to violence against women, IJGO 128.1, Jan. 2015, pp 87-88.  Online.
— Conflict of interest, including relationships with industry, IJGO 128.3, Mar. 2015, pp 282-283.  Online.

Holistic Pregnancy: Rejecting the Theory of the Adversarial Mother, by Rona Kaufman Kitchen, Hastings Women’s Law Journal, 26.2( 2015)  Article online.

[Latin America] “Reproduction and the Rule of Law in Latin America, by Michele Goodwin and Allison M. Whelan, Fordham Law Review, Vol. 83, No. 5, 2015; UC Irvine School of Law Research Paper No. 2015-44. Article online.

NEWS

Dominican Republic: Abortion Law Debated in Supreme Court,
Center for Reproductive Rights Press release

Ecuador – CEDAW recommends to decriminalize abortion for rape, incest and severe fetal impairment,  Concluding Observations – Ecuador.  Press release from Human Rights Watch.

Guyana:  Twenty years after legalization, the stigma of abortion still prevents effective implementation, by Fred Nunes (in Stabroek Newspaper)

Mexico:  legal grounds for abortion have been increased in three Mexican states: Guerrero, Michoacan and Tlaxcala. GIRE report

Morocco  considers new abortion law, led by the king and a gynecologist.  Guardian newspaper

Myanmar: population control bill signed into law despite concerns it could be used to persecute minorities.  News report.

Paraguay:  Raped 10-year old denied abortion is “tantamount to torture” claims Amnesty International.  News report

US-focused news, resources, and legal developments are available on Repro Rights Prof Blog. View or subscribe.

World Health Organization:  Misoprostol for treating Post-Partum Hemorrhage is included in the Model List of Essential Medicines
Model List.

Zimbabwe: Child brides take government to court over marriage laws.  News report.

JOBS 

Links to other employers in the field of Reproductive and Sexual Health Law are online here

Compiled by the Coordinator of the International Reproductive and Sexual Health Law Program, reprohealth*law at utoronto.ca.   For Program publications and resources, see our website, online here. TO JOIN THIS BLOG: enter your email address in upper right corner of this webpage, then check your email to confirm the subscription.


Africa: Human Rights Advances in Women’s Reproductive Health

May 28, 2015

Congratulations to Prof. Charles G. Ngwena of the Centre for Human Rights at the University of Pretoria, South Africa, and co-authors Dr. Eunice Brookman-Amissah and Patty Skuster, J.D., M.P.P., from Ipas, whose new article has been published in the International Journal of Gynecology & Obstetrics and is now available online at SSRN.

Ngwena CG, Brookman-Amissah E & Skuster,  P.   ‘Human rights advances in women’s reproductive health in Africa’ (2015) 129 International Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics  184-87.

The African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights recently adopted General Comment No 2 to interpret provisions of Article 14 of the Protocol to the African Charter on the Rights of Women. The provisions relate to women’s rights to fertility control, contraception, family planning, information and education, and abortion. The present article highlights the General Comment’s potential to promote women’s sexual and reproductive rights in multiple ways. The General Comment’s human rights value goes beyond providing states with guidance for framing their domestic laws, practices, and policies to comply with treaty obligations. General Comment No 2 is invaluable in educating all stakeholders—including healthcare providers, lawyers, policymakers, and judicial officers at the domestic level—about pertinent jurisprudence. Civil society and human rights advocates can use the General Comment to render the state accountable for failure to implement its treaty obligations.

The full text of this paper is online at SSRN.

67 other articles on “Ethical and Legal Issues in Reproductive and Sexual Health” are available online here.


Developments, Resources, Opportunities and Jobs

March 31, 2014

REPROHEALTHLAW BLOG – March 2014

SUBSCRIBE TO REPROHEALTHLAW:  To receive these updates monthly by email, enter your address in upper right corner of this webpage, then check your email to confirm the subscription.

DEVELOPMENTS

[Canada] Supreme Court upholds sexual assault conviction of man who pierced girlfriend’s condoms to impregnate her. The “condom sabotage constituted fraud … the result that no consent was obtained,” in R. v. Hutchinson, decision of March 7, 2014, 2014 SCC 19, docket no. 35176
56-page decision online.   News coverage.

[Europe – Italy – abortion – conscientious objection] European Committee on Social Rights on the merits of the complaint International Planned Parenthood Federation European Network (IPPF EN) v. Italy, Complaint No. 87/2012, re women’s difficulties accessing termination of pregnancy under Italian legislation which amount, according to the complainant organisation, to a breach of the right to health as guaranteed by the European Social Charter.  Health facilities do not effectively compensate for the deficiencies in service provision caused by health personnel who  invoke their right of conscientious objection.  IPPF complaint (30 pages);  Decision on the merits (67 pages).  Summary of Decision (4 pages), IPPF press release.

[Europe – parental leave and surrogacy] Court of Justice of the European Union.  Judgment in Cases C-167/12 C. D. v S.T. and C-363/12 Z. v A Government Department and the Board of Management of a Community School.  EU law does not require that a mother who has had a baby through a surrogacy agreement should be entitled to maternity leave or its equivalent.  The Pregnant Workers Directive merely lays down certain minimum requirements in respect of protection, although the Member States are free to apply more favourable rules for the benefit of such mothers. Official Press Release.   Decisions in English and French.

[CEDAW] Statement of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women on sexual and reproductive health and rights: Beyond 2014 ICPD review, 57th session, 10 – 28 February 2014. CEDAW statement.

The Airlie Declaration on Safe and Legal Abortion, 27 March, 2014,  Virginia.  Outcome of a 2-day meeting co-sponsored by Ipas, the International Planned Parenthood Federation, and the Center for Reproductive Rights.  Political, health and human rights leaders from over 30 countries took part in the event. About the meeting.    Declaration and signatories.  

Morocco reforms its rape law, January 8, 2014,  Article 475 of the Criminal /penal Code allowed rapists to escape prosecution if they married their victim, justifying the traditional practice of pressuring the victim to marry her rapist to preserve “family honor.”   New amendment removes the second paragraph of the article, lifting the immunity of the rapist and preventing him from marrying his victim.  WLP Press release.

South Africa is launching their new Contraception and Fertility Plannning guidelines.  Contraception guidelines.

Zimbabwe Supreme Court: Zimbabwe Women Lawyers Association successfully sued Government for raped woman denied abortion, Mildred Mapingure was awarded compensation for her and the resulting child.  Zimbabwe news.

CONFERENCES:

“Task Sharing in Abortion Care,” (FIAPAC) International Federation of Professional Abortion and Contraception Associates  bi-annual conference  for health care professionals working in the field of abortion care and contraception, Ljubljana, Slovenia,  October 3-4, 2014.  FIAPAC conference details.

“Histories on the Edge” Berkshire Conference on the History of Women, May 22-25, 2014, Toronto, Canada ( includes panel discussion “Pregnant Bodies As Conflict Zones: Abortion Politics in Transnational Context” with Grace Millar Sarah B. Rowley, Katrina Ackerman, Shannon Stettner, Lori A. Brown, Barbara Baird, Catherine Elizabeth Kevin, Discussants: Karissa Haugeberg and Rebecca Cook, May 25).  Preliminary Program.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES:

Fellowships for MA Social Determinants of Health, Doctoral, Post-Doctoral, Research Associate, and Senior Academic at the Comparative Program on Health and Society, University of Toronto 2014-15.  Supporting documents must arrive by May 27, 2014.  Call for Applications 2014/2015CPHS website.

Health Law Fellowships at the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law at Georgetown University, USA, 2014-15, working on academic legal research and scholarly projects in health law, beginning Fall 2014, 65K for one year plus benefits, Apply by April 25, 2014.  Overview online here.   O’Neill Application.

3-day intensive course on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights Litigation, The Global School on Socioeconomic Rights,  Harvard University  Boston MA, USA,  November 3-5, 2014, Apply by July 1, 2014.  Health Rights Litigation course

RESOURCES

Abortion Law in Transnational Perspective:  Cases and Controversies, ed. Rebecca J. Cook, Joanna N. Erdman and Bernard M. Dickens, 16 chapters.  Forthcoming, University of Pennsylvania Press, 2014.  To receive details when it is published, email reprohealth. law \at/ utoronto. ca with subject “abortion book flyer”.

[abortion] “My Body My Rights,” new Amnesty International campaign – 7-page report

On Abortion: Exploring Psychological Meaning and Attitudes in a Sample of Mexican Gynecologists, Ma. Luisa Marván, Asunción Álvarez del Río and Zaira Campos, Developing World Bioethics 14.1 (April 2014): 29–36.     Abstract or download article.

[abortion – Africa] “Facilitating women’s access to misoprostol through community-based advocacy in Kenya and Tanzania,” by Francine Coeytaux, Leila Hessini, Nondo Ejano, Albert Obbuyi, Monica Oguttu, Joachim Osur, Kristen Shuken, International Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics, 125.1(April 2014): 53-55. Abstract or download article.

[abortion – Ireland] “Human Rights and Abortion Law Reform in Ireland’ IFPA seminar held last December in Dublin Ireland, panel of national and international experts analysed abortion law in Ireland through the lens of equality, criminalisation, human rights and stigma, and explored ways forward to advance Irish abortion law reform.  Speakers included: Dr Ruth Fletcher, Prof. Rebecca Cook, Julie Kay, Lead Counsel in A, B and C v Ireland, Prof. Siobhán Mullally, and Mark Kelly.  Highlights:  9-minute video.

[abortion – Israel] “The effect of a policy change on late termination of pregnancy in Israel,” by Amir Aviram, Ami Fishman, Maya Steinberg, Ido Solt, Rami Aviram, Corresponding author contact information, E-mail the corresponding author.  International Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics  Abstract online.

[abortion – Nigeria] “Acceptability and feasibility of medical abortion with mifepristone and misoprostol in Nigeria,” by Friday Okonofua, Oladapo Shittu, Tara Shochet, Ayisha Diop and Beverly Winikoff, International Journal of Gynecology & Obstetrics 125.1 (April 2014): 49-52.  Abstract or download article.

[abortion – Pakistan]  The Rules for Abortion and Causing Miscarriage: Isqat-i-Haml and Isqat-i-Janin in the Pakistan Penal Code, by Imran Ahsan Nyazee, Islamabad School of Law, 19-page working paper online

[abortion and domestic violence] “Associations between Intimate Partner Violence and Termination of Pregnancy: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis,”  by Megan Hall, Lucy C. Chappell,  Bethany L. Parnell, Paul T. Seed, and  Susan Bewley,  PLOS Medicine,  January 07, 2014,  DOI: 10.1371/journal.pmed.1001581.  Article onlineNewsmedia comment.

[abortion ship] New film about Women on Waves: “Vessel”   “Vessel” film website.

“Abortion, Libertarianism, and Evictionism: A Last Word,” by Jakub Bożydar Wiśniewski, Libertarian Papers 5, 1 (2013). Article online.

“Conscientious objection and refusal to provide reproductive healthcare: A white paper examining prevalence, health consequences, and policy responses,” by Wendy Chavkin, Liddy Leitman, and Kate Polin, for Global Doctors for Choice  69-page paper online.

[conscientious objection] “The Scope of the Conscience-Based Exemption in Section 4(1) of the Abortion Act 1967: Doogan and Wood v NHS Greater Glasgow Health Board [2013] CSIH 36,” by Mary Neal, Medical Law Review doi: 10.1093/medlaw/fwt041 (pre-published online 20 January 2014)  Abstract online.

[Europe – human rights]  Shaping Rights in the ECHR:  The Role of the European Court of Human Rights in Determining the Scope of Human Rights, ed. Eva Brems and Janneke Gerards (Cambridge UP, 2014) pp 137-161.  (Abortion discussed in chapter 7  “Procedural Protection” by Eva Brems.)  Ebook through university librariesTable of Contents.   Book details from Publisher.

[Ireland]  “Refusal of Emergency Caesarean Section in Ireland: A Relational Approach.” by Katherine Wade, Medical Law Review 22.1(Winter 2014): 1-25.   Abstract online.

[Eastern Europe]  “Status of Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights in Central and Eastern Europe (ASTRA)  4-page fact sheet online.

The ICPD Beyond 2014 Global Report – now online (large file)UN Secretary-General’s report.

[maternal mortality]  “Accountability in the Provision of Quality Health Care for Women: Alyne da Silva Pimentel [in Brazil]”, by Mónica Aranga Olaya and Valentina Montoya Robledo, Policy in Focus 27 (March 2014): 8-9.  Issue online, see pages 8-9.

[maternal mortality – Uganda] A Global Social Contract to Reduce Maternal Mortality: The Human Rights Arguments and the Case of Uganda, by Gorik Ooms, Mulumba Moses, Rachel Hammonds, Laila Abdul Latif, Attiya Waris, and Lisa Forman, Reproductive Health Matters, Vol. 21, No. 42, November 2013, pp 129-138. Abstract online.

[stigma] “Reducing stigma in reproductive health,” by Rebecca J. Cook and Bernard M. Dickens, International Journal of Gynecology & Obstetrics 124.2(February 2014): 134-138.  Abstract and article online.

“Substantive Equality and Reproductive Rights: A Briefing Paper on Aligning Development Goals with Human Rights Obligations,” published by Center for Reproductive Rights, 30-page briefing paper.

US-focused news, resources, and legal developments are available on Repro Rights Prof Blog. View or subscribe.

NEWS

[abortion – Ireland]  Second woman challenges Ireland’s abortion laws at the UN re fetal abnormality.  Guardian news article.

[abortion – Turkey]Abortion banned in Turkish state hospitals, health group claims.    News report.

[abortion – UK]  Abortion provider BPAS fined £200,000 for data breach.  BPAS did not know that its website was storing the name, address, date of birth and telephone number of people who requested a callback for advice on pregnancy issues. Hacker caught before damage done.  BBC news report.

JOBS

Regional Director for Europe – based in Geneva, Switzerland, Center for Reproductive Rights. Apply by April 18, 2014.  CRR job details.

Program Associates, Global Development and Population Program, The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, Menlo Park Calif. USA. Hewlett job details.

Program Officer, Safe Abortion Advocacy, Latin America and Caribbean Countries, International Planned Parenthood Federation.  Job at IPPF-WHR.

Director, Special Projects, Ipas, Chapel Hill, NC, USA, Master’s degree required.  Ipas job details.

Links to other employers in the field of Reproductive and Sexual Health Law are online here

Compiled by the Coordinator of the International Reproductive and Sexual Health Law Program, reprohealth*law at utoronto.ca For Program publications and resources, see our website, online here.
TO JOIN THIS BLOG: enter your email address in upper right corner of this webpage, then check your email to confirm the subscription.


Reducing Stigma in Reproductive Health

March 31, 2014

Congratulations to Professors Rebecca Cook and Bernard Dickens, Co-Directors of our International Reproductive and Sexual Health Law Program at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Law, whose article on this important topic was recently published in the International Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics (IJGO).  The full text is now online here through SSRN.  An abstract is provided below:

Reducing Stigma in Reproductive Health
International Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics 125 (2014): 89-92.

Stigmatization marks individuals for disgrace, shame, and even disgust—spoiling or tarnishing their social identities. It can be imposed accidentally by thoughtlessness or insensitivity; incidentally to another purpose; or deliberately to deter or punish conduct considered harmful to actors themselves, others, society, or moral values. Stigma has permeated attitudes toward recipients of sexual and reproductive health services, and at times to service providers. Resort to contraceptive products, to voluntary sterilization and abortion, and now to medically assisted reproductive care to overcome infertility has attracted stigma. Unmarried motherhood has a long history of shame, projected onto the “illegitimate” (bastard) child. The stigma of contracting sexually transmitted infections has been reinvigorated with HIV infection. Gynecologists and their professional associations, ethically committed to uphold human dignity and equality, especially for vulnerable women for whom they care, should be active to guard against, counteract, and relieve stigmatization of their patients and of related service providers.

Full Text of article is available here through SSRN

Other IJGO articles on Ethical and Legal Issues in Reproductive Health are online here.


Developments, Calls, Resources, News & Jobs

February 25, 2014

REPROHEALTHLAW BLOG – February, 2014

SUBSCRIBE TO REPROHEALTHLAW:  To receive these updates monthly by email, enter your address in upper right corner of this webpage, then check your email to confirm the subscription.

DEVELOPMENTS:

[Argentina – abortion case] A Supreme Court in Argentina reversed a lower court ruling that had prevented a 14-year-old rape victim from seeking an abortion. News report.

[Bolivia – abortion law] Plurinacional Constitutional Court (TCP) of Bolivia eliminates requirement of judicial authorization for women seeking legal abortion in cases of rape or danger to life or health. Court used human rights arguments based on international human rights law.   Comment from Ipas.   Feb. 5, 2014 decision online (22MB) 62-page decision in Spanish.

[Europe – repro health] PACE adopts progressive Resolution on MDGs ,  January 30, 2014.   The Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly unanimously adopted Resolution 1975 (2014) “Stepping up action against global inequalities: Europe’s contribution to the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) process”. includes “the guarantee of sexual and reproductive health and rights for women and girls”.  Resolution online.     Debate and speeches.

[Europe  – Moldova] Eremia v. Moldova – The European Court of Human Rights ruled that the State of Moldova‘s failure to protect a woman in a domestic violence case violated the victim’s rights to be protected from torture and inhuman treatment.  Decision onlineCourt press release.

CALLS FOR SUBMISSIONS:

“Using Law and the Courts” Reproductive Health Matters 22.44 (Nov. 2014). Submissions due  May 2014.  Call for Papers online.

Gender Justice Uncovered Awards – Call for Nominations , Deadline April 30, 2014.  Winners will be announced in June 2014.   Anyone from anywhere in the world may nominate a good, bad, or ugly decision on the Awards’ web site. Submit your nomination by April 30, 2014.  More information.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES

Abortion Abroad Webinar Series, sponsored by Law Students for Reproductive Justice, Center for Reproductive Rights, and Ipas.  Webinar Series Overview.

—- The Helms Amendment, how it affects women on the ground, and legal issues. Featuring Jamila Taylor, Senior Policy Advisor, Ipas and Aram Schvey, Policy Counsel for Foreign Policy and Human Rights at the Center for Reproductive Rights.  March 4, 2014 Register Helms webinar:

—- “Stigma in the international context” Featuring Kristen Shellenberg, Senior Research and Evaluation Associate at Ipas and Payal Shah, Legal Advisor at the Center for Reproductive Rights March 25, 2014. Register Stigma webinar.

RESOURCES

[abortion – Argentina]  Report from La Asociación por los Derechos Civiles (ADC) on the state of enforcement of the Supreme Court’s “F,A.L.” judgement of March 13, 2012 legalizing abortion after rape.  Two years later, eight jurisdictions comply, eight include regulations that may hinder access, and eight do not comply. that “nearly two years after the ruling “F., A.L.”  many jurisdictions still have not created protocols, and many others were given faulty protocols, which generates a situation of intolerable inequality in which access to this right depends on the place of residence.  Detailed summary in Spanish.   Report in Spanish includes comparison chart (53 page Report)

[abortion – Australia] “Manufacturing Mental Illness (and Lawful Abortion): Doctors’ Attitudes to Abortion Law and Practice in New South Wales and Queensland” by Heather Douglas, Kirsten Black, Caroline deCosta,  (2013) 20.3 Journal of Law and Medicine 560-576.  Article online.

[abortion – Ireland] Revised guidelines for doctors in response to new “Protection of Life During Pregnancy Act”.  Revised paragraph #21 on Abortion (page 21) can be read in conjunction with #11 and # 39 on Emergencies and Emergency Situations, #34 on Capacity to Consent and #10 on Conscientious Objection.  Revised Irish medical guidelines.

[abortion – Ireland]  “Peripheral Governance: Administering Transnational Health Care Flows, by Ruth Fletcher, provides “a critical reading of the strategies that the Irish Crisis Pregnancy Agency has adopted in response to women’s practices of travelling for abortion care.”  (2013) 9 International Journal of Law in Context 161-190.  Full text of article now online.

Abortion Law in Transnational Perspective:  Cases and Controversies, ed. Rebecca J. Cook, Joanna N. Erdman and Bernard M. Dickens, 16 chapters.  Forthcoming, University of Pennsylvania Press, 2014.  To receive details when it is published, email reprohealth. law\at/ utoronto. ca with subject “abortion book flyer”.

[abortion stigma] new “Sea Change Program” is leading a new approach to culture change around abortion and other reproductive experiences, conducting social science research, developing tools to measure stigma, try new strategies for transforming stigma, partner with advocates and organizations, raise awareness about stigma and increase visibility, connection and support around abortion.   Stigma website.

[Nigeria] Women and Reproductive Health Rights in Nigeria, by Oluwakemi Amudat Ayanleye, OIDA International Journal of Sustainable Development  6.5(2013), 127-140. Article online.

NEWS

[abortion – Israel]  Abortion added to healthcare basket in Israel.  The 2014 basket includes abortion for women aged 20-33 without a medical reason for terminating pregnancy.  News report.

[abortion – Spain] Spain’s tough new abortion law advances after secret vote, Proposed law outlawing abortions except in rape cases or where the mother’s health is in danger has been widely criticized.   Guardian: “serious step backwards.”

[contraception]  new World Health Organization guidance on Ensuring human rights in the provision of contraceptive information and services. These guidelines provide recommendations for programmes as to how they can ensure that human rights are respected, protected and fulfilled, while services are scaled up to reduce unmet need for contraception. WHO Contraception Guidance.

[contraception] Scientist Malcolm Potts emphasizes birth control pills’ therapeutic properties. He notes that the Catholic church nearly approved them for contraception on theological grounds.  Op-ed online.

Homosexuality is now legal throughout Europe.  Northern Cyprus becomes last European territory to decriminalize gay sex.  News report.

US-focused news, resources, and legal developments are available on Repro Rights Prof Blog.  View or subscribe.

JOBS

Program Officer, Global Development and Population Program, The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, Menlo Park Calif.  USA.  Hewlett job details.

Program Officer, Safe Abortion Advocacy, Latin America and Caribbean Countries, International Planned Parenthood Federation, IPPF job details.

Links to other employers in the field of Reproductive and Sexual Health Law are online here.

Compiled by the Coordinator of the International Reproductive and Sexual Health Law Program, reprohealth*law at utoronto.ca.
For Program publications and resources, see our website, online here.
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