AFRICA: Legal Grounds III: Reproductive and Sexual Rights in Sub-Saharan African Courts – 54 case summaries

February 14, 2017

2017_legal_grounds

by: Godfrey Kangaude, Onyema Afulukwe, Guy-Fleury Ntwari, et al.
Foreword by Prof. Charles G. Ngwena
PULP (Pretoria University Law Press) 2017
Download entire 228 page book online.
Online edition with links to decisions
Printable flyer with Table of Contents
Previous volumes
.

Reproductive and sexual rights, which are guaranteed in constitutions and in international and regional human rights treaties, have no impact if they are not recognized and enforced by national-level courts. Legal Grounds: Sexual and Reproductive Rights in Sub-Saharan African Courts Volume III continues to provide much-needed information about whether and how national courts of African countries apply constitutional and human rights to protect reproductive and sexual rights. The case summaries, significance sections, and thematic highlights serve as useful resources for those seeking to further develop litigation, advocacy, and capacity- building strategies.

Like its predecessors, Legal Grounds: Reproductive and Sexual Rights in Sub-Saharan African Courts – Volume III is a tool for organizations, individuals, and institutions of learning. The scope of this third volume has been widened beyond Commonwealth African countries to include cases from Francophone countries, while focusing more exclusively on court decisions related to reproductive and sexual health. This compelling publication contributes towards a knowledge base of court decisions that bear directly or indirectly on the exercise of reproductive and sexual health as constitutional and human rights in Africa.
228 page book onlinePrevious volumes Printable flyer with Table of Contents.

TABLE OF CONTENTS:
Foreword, Introduction, Acknowledgments
Children and Adolescents
—Child, Forced and Early Marriage
—Female Genital Mutilation legal-grounds/
—Sexual Abuse, Assault and Violence
—Consensual Sexual Conduct
—Student Pregnancy
—Maternal Health Care and Services
Abortion and Fetal Interests
—Abortion
—Wrongful Birth or Life
Adoption and Surrogacy
—Adoption
—Surrogacy
Gender, Sexuality, Women and Discrimination
—Rape
—Disability, Sexuality and Criminal Law
—Women and Criminal Law
—Legal Recognition of Intersexuality
—Gender Identity
—Sexual Orientation
—Recognition of LGBTIQ Advocacy and Groups
HIV
—Access to Treatment
—Criminalisation of Transmission
—Forced Sterilization
—Discrimination in Employment
Francophone Africa / L’Afrique Francophone
—Adultery, Polygamy, Infanticide
Appendices – Table of Cases, Online Resources, Endnotes

HIGHLIGHTS BY AFRICAN AUTHORS:
Child Marriage: Legal and Socio-Cultural Aspects, by Godfrey Kangaude
Adolescent Consensual Sexual Conduct, by Godfrey Kangaude
Sexual Abuse, Assault and Violence, by Victoria Balogun
Maternal Health Care and Services, by Tinyade Kachika
Abortion and Fetal Interests, by Onyema Afulukwe
Adoption and Surrogacy, by Ronaldah Lerato Karabo Ozah
Gender, Sexuality, Women and Discrimination, by MaryFrances Lukera
Criminalisation of HIV Non-Disclosure, Exposure and Transmission, by Jacinta Nyachae
Sexual and Reproductive Rights of Women Living with HIV, by Ebenezer Durojaye
Towards Respect for Human Diversity, by Godfrey Kangaude

COUNTRIES:  Benin, Botswana, Kenya, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, Uganda,  Zambia, Zimbabwe

228 page book online.  Previous volumes.
Printable flyer with Table of Contents.


REPROHEALTHLAW Updates: Developments, Resources & Jobs

March 10, 2016

REPROHEALTHLAW Blog
March 10, 2016

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DEVELOPMENTS

General Comment 22”  United Nations – Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR) adopted a new General Comment 22 (E/C.12/GC/22)  on Article 12 (Health) of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.  This new General Comment highlights the numerous legal, procedural, practical and social barriers people face in accessing sexual and reproductive health care and information, and the resulting human rights violations.  It codifies wide-ranging state obligations regarding quality maternal health care, non-discrimination, contraception, safe abortion care, sex education, disabilities, infertility care, STIs and HIV/AIDS.  It also discusses conscience issues and rural, regional or cultural disparities.  Full text of General Comment No.22.     UN Press release.

Guyana: Midwives, nurses and pharmacists can provide abortion pill.  Guyana details..

Kenya:  AIDS Law Project v Attorney General and 3 Others [2015] eKLR, Petition No. 97 of 2010 (High Court of Kenya at Nairobi). [Criminal provisions of HIV/AIDS law held unconstitutional.]  Decision online.    Case Summary by Godfrey Kangaude.  

Kenya: duty to protect rights of intersex persons (2 cases)
Baby “A” (suing through her mother, E.A.) and The Cradle the Children Foundation v Attorney General, Kenyatta National Hospital, and the Registrar of Births and Deaths [2014] eKLR, Petition No. 266 of 2013 (High Court of Kenya at Nairobi, (Constitutional and Human Rights Division)). Decision onlineFull Case Summary.
RM v The Hon. Attorney General & 4 Others, [2010] eKLR Petition no 705 of 2007 (High Court of Kenya at Nairobi, Nairobi Law Courts). R.M. Decision online.   Case summary of R.M

Uganda.  “African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights Calls on Uganda to Ensure The Right to Legal Abortion and Access to Reproductive Health Services.”  Recommendations call for Uganda to implement the Maputo Protocol—the only treaty, at both the international and regional levels, that explicitly guarantees the right to legal abortion in cases of sexual assault, rape, incest, and where the continued pregnancy endangers the mental and physical health or life of the woman or in cases of fatal fetal impairments.  CRR Press Release Mar.7, 2016
Background from CRR:  74-page report 2013 .  46-page guide to Ugandan abortion law/policy 2012CRR/CEHURD Shadow report 2014.

U.S.   Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt: Hearings were held in the US Supreme Court on Mar 2, 2016. The judgment is anticipated in June 2016, and it will determine whether women will have access to abortion services in Texas, and in other states with laws comparable to the restrictive Texas law.   Case history from CRR.  Official transcript, Mar 2, 2016.   Reports of the hearing: Slate article: Oral arguments.   Slate blog: “Most important question.”   Comment:  When “protecting health” obstructs choice :  SCOTUS blog.   Scholarship:  Linda Greenhouse and Reva Siegel, “Casey and the Clinic Closings: When ‘Protecting Health’ Obstructs Choice,” 125 Yale Law Journal 1428-1480 (2016) Greenhouse & Siegel article.

Zimbabwe:  Mudzuru & Another v Ministry of Justice, Legal & Parliamentary Affairs (N.O.) & Others (Const. Application No. 79/14) [2015] ZWCC 12 (20 January 2016);  Constitutional Court outlawed child marriage under 18 years old.  Decision online.   News report.

COURSES

Advanced Human Rights – short courses at the Centre for Human Rights, University of Pretoria, South Africa.
♦  Disability Rights in an African Context  March 14-18, 2016.  Disability Rights Course.
♦  Judicial Enforcement of Socio-Economic Rights in Africa,  Socio-Economic Rights
May 16-20, 2016
♦  Civil Society Law in Africa, June 8-10, 2016  Civil Society Law Course

RESOURCES

[abortion]  Common Law Fundamentals of the Right to Abortion, by Anita Bernstein. Buffalo Law Review Vol. 63, p. 1141, 2015; Brooklyn Law School, Legal Studies Paper No. 438. Bernstein article.

[abortion, Ireland]  The Geography of Abortion (December 11, 2015). by Fergus W. Ryan.  Ryan working paper.

[abortion, Latin America, Caribbean] Investigación sobre aborto en América Latina y el Caribe: Una agenda renovada para informar políticas públicas e incidencia (Research on abortion in Latin America & the Caribbean: A renewed agenda to inform public policy and incidence) Published by CLACAI (Latin American Consortium against Unsafe Abortion) with the support of CEDES Argentina, Population Council USA, and Promsex Peru.   Investigación en EspanolAlternative download link.

[abortion – UK]  British Abortion Law: Speaking from the Past to Govern the Future (March 2016). The Modern Law Review, Vol. 79, Issue 2, pp. 283-316, 2016.
Sheldon article.

Engendering Reproductive Rights in the Inter-American System (2016), by Ciara  O’Connell,  in Gender, Sexuality and Social Justice: What’s Law Got to Do With It?, ed. Kay Lalor, Elizabeth Mills, Arturo Sánchez García and Polly Haste. p. 58, Institute of Development Studies, 2016 . O’Connell chapter

NEWS

Malawi – homosexuality: “Malawi government challenges the clergy on gay rights.”  The real issue is whether the pending Judicial Review should declare the anti-homosexuality law invalid under the Constitution.   News report.

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

Zambia:    Chief Justice launched the first-ever gender-based violence (GBV) fast track court in Kabwe.  News report.

JOBS

Director, new Human Rights Institute, Oxford University, UK  Oxford Directorship

Director of Programs, International Planned Parenthood Federation, Western Hemisphere Region. Apply by March 15, 2016.  IPPF Director.

Lecturer / Senior Lecturer in Gender Studies @ SOAS Centre for Gender Studies, London, UK.    Apply by March 21, 2016.  Lecturer at SOAS.

Postdoctoral research fellow, 3 years, new “Political Determinants of S&R Health” project based at University of Bergen, Norway.  Apply by March 31, 2016.  Postdoc job.

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 hereTO JOIN THIS BLOG: enter your email address in upper right corner of this webpage, then check your email to confirm the subscription.


REPROHEALTHLAW Updates: Decisions, Calls, Events and Scholarship

October 15, 2015

REPROHEALTHLAW-L
October 15 2015

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COURT DECISIONS

SPAIN  [Case of Tania and Veronica, Social Court 18, Madrid, October 2015]  Court rules that same-sex couple were unjustly denied artificial insemination.  Damages awarded from hospital  for denying treatment and the Local Health Authority for discrimination.  Judgment sets a precedent affirming that the hospital and the Local Authority should have applied the higher standing regulation as opposed to a lesser standing administrative decision from Spanish Ministry of Health which excludes assisted reproductive treatments in the public health system for all women without a male partner.  English press release from Women’s Link Worldwide   Details from Women’s Link Worldwide.   Spanish news report.

KENYA:    Lucy Nyambura & Another v Town Clerk, Municipal Council of Mombasa & 2 Others [2011] eKLR, Petition No. 286 of 2009 (High Court of Kenya).  Decision online.  Case summary/analysis by Godfrey Kangaude and Winnet Shamuyarira.  [Conviction for loitering for purposes of prostitution held constitutional.]

Republic v Jackson Namunya Tali [2014] eKLR, High Court Criminal Case No. 75 of 2009 (High Court of Kenya at Nairobi). Decision online.   Case summary/ analysis by Godfrey Kangaude and Annagrace Rwehumbiza.   [Kenyan High Court convicts nurse of murder over abortion related death. ]

NAMIBIA:    LM and Others v. Government of the Republic of Namibia, [2012] NAHC 211 (High Court of Namibia) Decision online.  Brief abstract by Andy Sprung.   New: Case summary/analysis by Godfrey Kangaude and Phillipa Tucker.    [Court found forced sterilization of women without informed consent; unproven link to HIV-positive status]

Government of the Republic of Namibia v L.M. & 2 Others [2014] NASC 19 (Supreme Court of Namibia). Decision onlineCase summary/analysis by Godfrey Kangaude and Philippa Tucker.  [Supreme Court links forced sterilisation to infringement of constitutional rights]

ZIMBABWE:   Mildred Mapingure v Minister Of Home Affairs and 2 Others [2014], Judgment No. SC 22/14, Civil Appeal No. SC 406/12 (Supreme Court of Zimbabwe). Decision online. Brief abstract by Michelle Hayman.   New:  Case summary/analysis by Godfrey Kangaude and Rudo Chigudu.   [State held liable for hindering access to emergency contraception, but not abortion]

The five case analyses mentioned above have been prepared for a new book,  Legal Grounds III:  Reproductive and Sexual Rights in Sub-Saharan African Courts, forthcoming 2016.  Decisions,  case summaries and previous volumes.    How you can help.


CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS

[HIV stigma in health care] UNAIDS seeks input from individuals and organizations who use tools to assess and/or address HIV-related stigma and discrimination in health care settings.    Inquiries? Contact: Program on Global Health and Human Rights, University of Southern California {uschealthhumanrights [at} gmail {dot] com.   Respond to online questionnaire by October 23, 2015 in  English    Spanish   Russian  Arabic.

EVENTS:

“What’s the Harm?: Understanding Reproductive Injustice” full day symposium at New York University School of Law on Friday, October 30, 2015 at 9:00am.  Symposium details;  Registration required.

El IV Congreso Latinoamericano Jurídico sobre Derechos Reproductivos Lima, Peru, November 2-4, 2015   Latin American Legal Congress.

SCHOLARSHIP AND RESOURCES:

Abortion is still illegal in the UK, thanks to this Victorian law ” by Sally Sheldon, The Conversation, Oct 6, 2015.  Article online.

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. Table of Cases online  Table of ContentsPurchase from U Penn Press. A Spanish edition was published in August, 2016.  Ahora disponible en español.

“Conscientious Objection, Harm Reduction and Abortion Care,” by Ruth Fletcher , in Mary Donnelly and Claire Murray eds., Ethical, Legal and Policy Debates in Irish Healthcare: Confronting Complexities (Manchester University Press, 2015,  Abstract and chapter online.  Book forthcoming 2015

“Human-rights-based approaches to health in Latin America,” by Alicia Ely Yamin, Ariel Frisancho,  The Lancet, 385(9975), e26-e29, 4 April 2015   Abstract and article online.

Rwanda:  When Abortion is a Crime  (Ipas, Sept 2015) [research study based on case summaries and interviews with prisoners  28-page report

United Nations: Draft General Comment 36 on Article 6: Right to Life  now available for consideration by UN Human Rights Committee. CCPR/C/GC/R.36/Rev.2  Draft online.

Worldwide Abortion Policies, updated Oct 5, 2015.  Pew Research Center report.   “How abortion is regulated around the world”.

NEWS:

[Brazil – abortion]  “Sexual Politics in Brazil:  wider frontline to cope with.” by  Sonia Corrêa and Fábio Grotz *  Article online  [re current  bill to legalize abortion]

Rwanda:  “Government Moves to Ease Process of Seeking Legal Abortion”  by Rodrigue Rwirahira And Michel Nkurunziza.  Article online.

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

JOBS

Links to 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.


Human Rights and African Abortion Laws: A Handbook for Judges

July 30, 2015

Congratulations to Prof. Charles Ngwena and the Ipas Africa Alliance upon the publication of this concise guide, Human Rights and African Abortion Laws which judges can use to interpret and apply domestic abortion laws, taking into account global and regional human rights standards.   The Table of Contents, reproduced below, provides a more detailed overview of this useful resource:

HUMAN RIGHTS AND AFRICAN ABORTION LAWS:
A  HANDBOOK  FOR  JUDGES

by Prof. Charles Ngwena  (Nairobi, Kenya:  Ipas Africa Alliance, 2014) 85 pages, online hereDirect link to PDF

I   INTRODUCING THE HANDBOOK
1.1      Introduction
1.2      Purpose of the handbook
1.3      Role of the courts
1.4      Women’s rights in the age of constitutionalism and human rights
1.5      Structure of the handbook

II.   THE BURDEN OF PREVENTABLE UNSAFE ABORTION IN THE SUB-SAHARAN REGION
2.1     Introduction
2.2    Scale and health consequences of unsafe abortion
2.3   Costs of unsafe abortion

III.   HISTORICAL DEVELOPMENT OF DOMESTIC LAWS IN AFRICA
3.1 Historical development
3.2 Abortion law in European colonies in Africa (non- British colonies)
3.3 Abortion law in British colonies in Africa
3.4 Section 58 of the Offences Against the Person Act of 1861 and the Bourne case
3.5 The significance of the Bourne case

IV.     CURRENT DOMESTIC ABORTION LAWS IN AFRICA
4.1    Introduction
4.2    Sources of abortion law
4.3    Overview of current abortion laws
4.4    Abortion and the constitution
——–4.4.1    Uganda and Zimbabwe
——–4.4.2    Swaziland and Kenya
4.5  Untested abortion laws
4.6  Linking abortion laws with unsafe abortion
4.7  Abortions laws as barriers

V.     APPLYING HUMAN RIGHTS TO FRAME, INTERPRET AND APPLY DOMESTIC ABORTION LAWS
5.1  Introduction
5.2  Global developments
——–5.2.1    Global consensus statements
——–
5.2.2    Treaty-monitoring bodies and special rapporteurs of the United Nations
——–
5.2.3    Decisions of treaty monitoring bodies under optional protocols
——–
5.2.4    World Health Organization: Technical and policy Guidance
5.3  Regional developments
——–5.3.1    African regional developments
——–
5.3.2    Human rights developments in the European and the Inter-American regions 

VI.    ABORTION AND COMPARATIVE LAW
6.1    Introduction
6.2    Interpreting the life ground
6.3    Interpreting the health ground
6.4    Foetal rights
6.5    Criminalisation of abortion
6.6    Spousal consent requirements
6.7    Parental consent requirements
6.8    Conscientious objection by auxiliary workers
6.9    Conscientious objection by judges

VII.       CASE STUDIES: STATE OBLIGATIONS TO RESPECT, PROTECT AND FULFIL WOMEN’S RIGHTS TO ABORTION
7.1    Introduction
7.2    Case study 1: Abortion law reform with human rights principles
——–7.2.1 Introduction
7.3 Case study 2: A challenge to a restrictive abortion law
——–7.3.1    Introduction        

BIBLIOGRAPHY

————————————————————-
Human Rights and African Abortion Laws: A Handbook for Judges (85 pages): is online hereDirect link to PDF.


REPROHEALTHLAW Updates

May 28, 2015

REPROHEALTHLAW-L  May 28, 2015

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.

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.


Zimbabwe Supreme Court: State hindered access to emergency contraception, but not abortion

October 29, 2014

Many thanks to our research assistant, Michelle Hayman, a second-year law student, for summarizing this case for Reprohealthlaw subscribers.

Mildred Mapingure v Minister of Home Affairs, No. SC 22/14, 25 March 2014, Supreme Court of Zimbabwe , decision online.

Mildred Mapingure brought claim against the state for damages for physical and mental pain and for maintenance in respect of her child after a series of bureaucratic hurdles stopped her from preventing or terminating her pregnancy caused by rape.

The Supreme Court held that the state was liable for the negligence of the doctor and police officers whose actions prevented Mapingure from accessing emergency contraceptive treatment following her immediate report of the rape and request for treatment.

However, the Court dismissed Mapingure’s claim that the state was liable for the failure to terminate the pregnancy. Patel JA held that according to the Termination of Pregnancy Act, it was the appellant’s responsibility to institute the proceedings for the issuance of a magisterial certificate to allow for the termination of her pregnancy and dismissed her claim that she was following the incorrect advice of state officials. Following this, Patel JA remitted the claim for damages for pain and suffering to the court to determine the appropriate amount of compensation, but dismissed the claim for damages for the maintenance of her child.

The case has received mixed reception among women’s rights organizations. Some have applauded the Supreme Court’s recognition of the state’s failure to provide access to emergency contraceptives as an actionable wrong and for Patel JA’s discussion of Zimbabwe’s international obligations to support the rights of women. Others have criticized the decision for failing to find negligence on the part of the state in impeding termination of the pregnancy, despite the Court’s criticism of the wording of the Act as “ineptly framed” and “lacking sufficient clarity” (28).

Full text of the case is online here.

Detailed case analysis by Godfrey Kangaude and Rudo Chigudu for  Legal Grounds III:  Reproductive and Sexual Rights in Sub-Saharan African Courts, forthcoming 2016.
For summaries of older African cases, see:  Legal Grounds: Reproductive and Sexual Rights in African Commonwealth Courts, Volumes I and II
More info and free download options


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.
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