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Sexual and Reproductive Rights

    May 27, 2019

    Women engaged in sex work in the Dominican Republic are routinely raped, tortured, and humiliated by police as a form of social control, and as punishment for transgressing social norms surrounding femininity and sexuality. Transgender women suffer particularly extreme forms of sexual abuse and humiliation due to the additional transphobia they face. We must demand their protection and rights now.

    Amnesty International documented the stories of women that have been subjected to these abuses in “If they can have her, why can’t we?,” a report published in April 2019.

    Luna’s story

    In this video, Luna explains how transphobia and homophobia in the Dominican Republic influence particular forms of gender-based violence against people like her, engaged in sex work, and how their activism has helped to bring about change.

    May 24, 2019
    This weekend marks one-year since Ireland voted to repeal its near-total abortion ban Amnesty teams with renowned artist Maser to shine iconic ‘Now for Northern Ireland’ images across London, Belfast, Dublin and Glasgow Spotlight on the ‘unjustifiable neglect’ of Northern Ireland - still governed by one of the world’s strictest abortion laws New short film ‘Story of Repeal’ tells story of campaigners, politicians, and women who have bravely spoken out in Ireland
    April 03, 2019

    Despite being among the top ranking countries in the world in terms of gender equality, four Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden) have disturbingly high levels of rape and survivors of sexual violence are being failed by their justice systems, Amnesty International said in a report published today.

    Time for change: Justice for rape survivors in the Nordic countries reveals that flawed legislation and widespread harmful myths and gender stereotypes have resulted in endemic impunity for rapists across the region.

    “It is a paradox that Nordic countries, which have strong records of upholding gender equality, suffer shockingly high levels of rape,” said Kumi Naidoo, Amnesty International’s Secretary General. 

    March 05, 2019

    A call for consent-based rape legislation by Danish Minister of Justice Soren Pape Poulsen is an important and welcome step, said Amnesty International as it launches a new report into barriers to justice for rape victims in Denmark.

    Responding to a statement by Soren Pape Poulsen today, that there is a “need for new legislation that that says sex should always be voluntary,” Amnesty International’s Secretary General Kumi Naidoo said:

    “We welcome the fact that the Danish Minister of Justice has chosen to make a statement supporting Amnesty’s call for consent-based legislation.

    “Together with the survivors campaigning for improved access to justice, we look forward to seeing the draft law. But this is only one piece of the puzzle and it is essential that other Ministries support this initiative. Any law must be accompanied by proper implementation, appropriate sexuality education and challenging rape myths through awareness-raising.”

    February 26, 2019

    Across Canada and as recently as 2017, Indigenous women report being forcibly or coercively sterilized. Some women were incorrectly told the procedure is reversible. Others were separated from their babies until they consented to a tubal ligation.

    Forced and coerced sterilizations of Indigenous women are a result of systemic bias and discrimination against Indigenous peoples in the provision of public services in Canada, a pattern well known and acknowledged by government. They are an assault on the cultural integrity of societies that have already endured grave human rights violations including forced assimilation.

    Sterilizing women without their free, full, and informed consent is a form of violence and torture. Measures to prevent births within ethnic or racial groups is explicitly prohibited by the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.

    All women have the human right to make decisions around if, when, and how to create a family. All women have a right to live free from violence and discrimination. All women have a right to health.

    February 22, 2019

    Send a message to women in Canada who have been sterilized without consent, expressing your support and solidarity.

     

    Indigenous women in Canada have been sterilized without their free, full, and informed consent, a practice the United Nations has affirmed is a form of torture. Why? Because of systemic bias and deep-rooted discrimination against Indigenous peoples in the provision of public services in Canada, a pattern well known and acknowledged by government. It is possible that other women facing discrimination have also been sterilized without consent.

     

    November 19, 2018

    Alisa Lombard is an associate with Maurice Law, Canada’s first national Indigenous-owned law firm, and the lead on a proposed class action law suit in Saskatchewan brought by two women who claim having been forcibly or coercively sterilized between 2000-2010. Over 60 women have reached out reporting they were sterilized without proper and informed consent, most from Saskatchewan, and also from Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, and Ontario.

    We spoke with Alisa the week the issue of the ongoing practice of forced and coerced sterilizations of Indigenous women and girls in Canada became headline news, prompting calls for urgent action to end this human rights violation and provide justice for the survivors.

    November 13, 2018
    TAKE ACTION to end sterilizations without consent

    Canadian and international media are reporting on the ongoing practice of coerced of forced sterilizations of Indigenous women in Canada. Here’s what you need to know.

    What is forced sterilization and coerced sterilization?

    August 09, 2018

    Today’s referral to trial of Amal Fathy, an Egyptian activist arrested for posting a video online sharing her experiences of sexual harassment, is a shocking case of injustice, Amnesty International said.

    “Amal Fathy was brave in speaking up about her experience of sexual harassment in Egypt and should be applauded for her courage – not put on trial,” said Najia Bounaim, Amnesty International’s North Africa Campaigns Director.

    “Instead of prosecuting perpetrators of violence against women, the Egyptian authorities are persecuting Amal Fathy for speaking out against sexual harassment. It is a shocking case of injustice. She is a human rights defender who told her truth to the world and wanted to highlight the vital issue of women’s safety in Egypt. She is not a criminal.

    August 09, 2018

    The decision of the Argentine Senate to reject the draft bill to legalize voluntary termination of pregnancy during the first 14 weeks represents the loss of an historic opportunity for the human rights of women, girls and others who can become pregnant, Amnesty International said today.

    “The Argentine lawmakers chose today to turn their backs on hundreds of thousands of women and girls who have been fighting for their sexual and reproductive rights. The senators who voted against this or abstained have therefore decided to agree on a system which forces women, girls and others who can become pregnant to undergo clandestine and unsafe abortions”, said Mariela Belski, Executive Director of Amnesty International Argentina.

    “All that this decision does is perpetuate the circle of violence which women, girls and others who can become pregnant are forced into. The executive branch had sent a message by opening the debate, but the legislative branch has not risen to the occasion.”

    August 03, 2018

    By Tamara Moussa Beirut, Lebanon.

    On December 10, 2017, Iraq declared its victory over the armed group calling itself Islamic State (IS), which had been attempting to establish a so-called Islamic Caliphate in the country since late June 2014. In what we can begin to call post-IS Iraq, thousands upon thousands of civilians bear scars from crimes the armed group committed against them and their loved ones. The legacy of these crimes is likely to affect, not only the survivors, but generations to come.

    IS wreaked havoc on the civilian population in Iraq, at times brutally targeting ethnic and religious minorities, including Christians and Yezidis in Northern Iraq. Four years on, Yezidi women and girls are left with harrowing physical and psychological trauma as a result of horrifying sexual violence and enslavement by the armed group, even as they continue to live with the angst of not knowing the fate and whereabouts of their relatives who went missing as a result of IS actions.

    July 19, 2018

    Human rights defenders have advocated long and hard for law and policies which protect sexual and reproductive rights, including safe and legal abortion services. This work is often slow, challenging, and full of setbacks, which is why every victory is so thoroughly celebrated!

     

    June 05, 2018

    By Emma Jayne Geraghty

    Emma Jayne Geraghty works for Amnesty International Canada in Toronto. She was one of thousands of Irish ex-pats who traveled home to Ireland to vote in the historic referendum on whether to repeal the eighth amendment of the constitution, which bans abortion. On May 25th Ireland voted overwhelmingly to repeal the eighth amendment, paving the way for safe and legal abortion services in Ireland. Learn more>>

    May 26, 2018

    Reacting to news of the victory for the “Yes” campaign in Ireland’s referendum on abortion, Colm O Gorman, Executive Director of Amnesty International Ireland said:

    “While the final count is not yet confirmed, it has been formally announced as “Yes” result. Today’s historic referendum result is a victory for equality, for dignity, for respect and compassion. It is a victory for a future Ireland where the human rights of women and girls are respected and protected.

    “Today’s important outcome was made possible by the determination of those who campaigned tirelessly for change and by the courage of those women and girls who bravely shared their stories.

    “Through this result, the people of Ireland have demonstrated that positive change is possible and have sent a message of hope around the world.”

     

    For more information please contact Elizabeth Berton-Hunter, Media Relations 416-363-9933 ext 332 bberton-hunter@amnesty.ca

     

     

     

     

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