E-NEWS AND INFORMATION ON SEXUAL AND REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH AND RIGHTS
APA and members ACPD, PPAT, and Youth Coalition, joined over 320 civil society organizations from 80 countries calling on world leaders to ensure that sexual and reproductive health and rights are at the centre of all efforts to meet reproductive health needs, including family planning, in the run-up to the ‘Family Planning Summit’ on 11 July. The Summit, organized by the UK Government and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, aims to mobilize global policy, financing, commodity and service delivery commitments to support the rights of an additional 120 million women and girls in the world’s poorest countries to use contraceptive information, services and supplies, without coercion or discrimination, by 2020. Read the call here.
Family Planning International together with UNFPA supported the New Zealand Parliamentarians Group on Population and Development to host an open hearing on “Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights in the Pacific” on 11 June. Read more here.
Population Action International (PAI) and Youth Coalition are attending the Rio+20 UN Conference on Sustainable Development being held in Brazil, 20-22 June. Released yesterday, the Rio+20 outcome document was the subject of intense negotiations by governments in the 3 days leading up to the conference. While it includes a re-affirmation of both the Cairo and Beijing agreements, it falls short by failing to recognize that reproductive rights are also critical to the achievement of sustainable development. Read a blog by Suzanne Ehlers, President and CEO of PAI here. Access the draft outcome document here.
HIV patients in developing countries will soon have access to an affordable diagnostic test to determine if they should start life-saving antiretroviral drugs. The Burnet Institute has announced a licensing agreement with Omega Diagnostics Group PLC, to commercialise the point-of-care CD4 test for use worldwide, including aid agencies delivering frontline health services. Agencies in Papua New Guinea, India and South Africa are likely to be among the first to access the Burnet CD4 test. Read more here.
International Planned Parenthood Federation East & South East Asia and Oceania Region (IPPF ESEAOR) is currently looking for a Director for its SPRINT Initiative: Accessing Sexual and Reproductive Health Services in Humanitarian settings. The Director will lead a virtual team that will build capacity across IPPF to engage with humanitarian responses, and will advocate to stakeholders for the inclusion of SRH in humanitarian responses. Deadline for applications is 29 June. Read more about the position here.
A call for action to help ensure the ASEAN Human Rights Declaration (AHRD) includes women’s human rights has been sent out by the Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development (APWLD). Add your voice and join those from Asia Pacific and around the world demanding the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR) integrates international women’s human rights standards into the AHRD. Read more here.
WHO just released the ‘Safe abortion: technical and policy guidance for health systems’ 2nd edition, for policy-makers, programme managers and health-service providers with the latest evidence-based guidance on clinical care. An estimated 21.6 million unsafe abortions took place worldwide in 2008, almost all in developing countries. And deaths due to unsafe abortion remain close to 13% of all maternal deaths. Access the Technical Guidance here.
According to a new study, the number of women in developing countries who want to avoid pregnancy but are not using modern contraception declined only slightly between 2008 and 2012, from 226 to 222 million. And in the 69 poorest countries—where 73% of all women with unmet need for modern contraceptives reside—the number actually increased, from 153 to 162 million women. ‘Adding It Up: Costs and Benefits of Contraceptive Services—Estimates for 2012’ was undertaken by the Guttmacher Institute and UNFPA. Read the report here.
New technical product briefs on maternal health supplies have been released by the Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition. The briefs provide concise but comprehensive overviews of each technology and include information on efficacy, suppliers, and pricing agreements. The 13 products include contraceptives, vaccines, and now the following maternal health supplies: magnesium sulfate, misoprostol, and oxytocin. Access the briefs here.
A new publication by EROTICS (Exploratory Research on Sexuality and the Internet) examines the current landscape of sexual and internet rights; the value of the internet in the exercise of rights by people of diverse sexualities; different forms of challenges, threats and restrictions to the free flow of information and engagement online that emerged; and the key actors. EROTICS aims to promote evidence-based policy making by engaging in on-the-ground research with a range of internet users. Read the report here.
E-NEWS AND INFORMATION ON SEXUAL AND REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH AND RIGHTS
APA endorses and is actively disseminating information about the International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion, which was announced on International Day of Actions for Women's Health, May 28. The international campaign aims to 1) promote universal access to safe, legal abortion as a women’s health and human rights issue; and 2) to support women’s autonomy to make their own decisions whether and when to have children and have access to the means of acting on those decisions without risk to their health and lives.
APA would like to warmly welcome Kate Tibone to the Secretariat team. Kate joins us as a professional volunteer for the next 10 weeks and will be working on a project to strengthen civil society advocacy on HIV/AIDS and its intersections with sexual and reproductive health and rights and gender.
Congratulations to Mr. Shiv Khare, Executive Director of the Asian Forum of Parliamentarians on Population and Development (AFPPD), an APA Member. Mr. Khare was honoured for his contributions towards shaping the regional and global parliamentarians’ movement on population and development at the recent 5th International Parliamentarians’ Conference on the Implementation of ICPD Programme of Action (IPCI-ICPD) in Istanbul, Turkey on 25th May.
Several APA members have endorsed the “International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion”, including Action Canada for Population and Development (ACPD); Family Planning International (FPI) New Zealand; Japanese Organization for International Cooperation in Family Planning (JOICFP); International Planned Parenthood Federation East & South East Asia and Oceania Region (IPPF ESEAOR); Marie Stopes International (MSI) Australia; Pathfinder International; and Positive Women, Inc.
The 2nd International Congress on Women’s Health and Unsafe Abortion will have the theme of 'Unsafe Abortion and Safe Motherhood' and is being held in Bangkok, Thailand from 22 - 25 January 2013. Read more here. Abstracts for 10 minute oral presentations at the Congress will be accepted until 30 June. Access more information here.
An examination of the implementation and impact of legal reforms in Cambodia and Nepal, along with four other countries, finds that expanding access to legal abortion does not in itself guarantee a decrease in unsafe procedures. ‘Making Abortion Services Accessible in the Wake of Legal Reform’ by Guttmacher finds that to increase safe abortion services following legal reform requires sustained commitment and dedicated human and financial resources. Evidence shows that restrictive abortion laws contribute substantially to maternal illness and death from unsafe abortion, and, in the last two decades, 26 countries have expanded the conditions under which abortion is legal. Read more here.
Lawmakers from 110 countries reaffirmed their support to the principles and goals of the 1994 Cairo International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD), emphasizing their continued centrality to efforts to reduce poverty and safeguard people's health and rights, including sexual and reproductive health and reproductive rights, at the 5th International Parliamentarians’ Conference on the Implementation of ICPD Programme of Action, 24-25 May in Istanbul, Turkey. Read more here.
This latest research on medical abortion compared home-based and clinic-based abortion was undertaken by Marie Stopes International and published in the Bulletin of the WHO. A systematic review of nine studies, it found home-based abortion to be safe, with no differences in effectiveness or acceptability between the settings. Read more here.
Reproductive Health Matters Journal is calling for papers on young people, sex and relationships. The journal issue aims to explore the changing language and culture around young people’s sexual relationships and sexual health, as well as the gap between what young people want and need, what young people are told they need, and what they are actually receiving. Submissions are due in September 2012. Read more here.
Proposed bans on abortion for the purpose of sex selection, which are being promoted by abortion-rights opponents at the state and federal levels, would do nothing to address the entrenched gender bias that underlies the practice, but instead would harm women's health and rights, according to a new Guttmacher policy analysis. Entrenched preference for sons should instead be addressed by countering social and cultural bias against women. Read more here.
A Global Plan for ending vertical transmission of HIV and reducing maternal mortality of women living with HIV was launched in June 2011. ITPC developed a short survey to help provide civil society feedback on the plan, as it is implemented and refined at global and national levels. Deadline is 3 June. Access the survey on the Global Plan here.
An international advocacy campaign for a 'Framework Convention on Global Health' (FCGH) has been formed by Joint Action and Learning Initiative on National and Global Responsibilities for Health (JALI), a global coalition of civil society and academics. 'Health for All, Justice for All', illustrates how FCGH would improve health and reduce inequalities – through national responsibilities for the population’s health; defining international responsibilities for reliable, sustainable funding; setting global health priorities; coordinating fragmented activities; reshaping global governance for health; and providing strong global health leadership through the World Health Organization. Read the article here.
Join an e-consultation in the lead up to LIVING 2012: The Positive Leadership Summit, the 13th International Conference for people living with HIV, the Global Network of People living with HIV and the LIVING 2012 partnership. LIVING 2012 is a global consultative process under the umbrella of Positive Health, Dignity and Prevention which will redefine the Global Advocacy Agenda for people living with HIV under the three themes of: 1) access to treatment, prevention, care and support; 2. human rights; 3) community mobilisation and activism. Access the consultation here.