This week’s UN Commission on Population and Development is discussing reproductive health, fertility and development. In line with these discussions, I would like to bring to your attention a new and exciting initiative: RESURJ!
The Realizing Sexual and Reproductive Justice (RESURJ) alliance is an international alliance of feminist activists seeking full implementation of international commitments to secure all women’s and young people’s sexual and reproductive rights and health by 2015.
A statement containing their ten-point Action Agenda for achieving sexual and reproductive justice is available below in English and then Spanish. To endorse this Action Agenda or for further information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or sign on at http://resurj.org (the Spanish language version is here). You can follow RESURJ and receive updates from the UN on Twitter using handle @RESURJ. The French version of the statement is forthcoming.
RESURJ is an international alliance of feminist activists seeking full implementation of international commitments to secure all women’s and young people’s sexual and reproductive rights and health by 2015.
“RESURJ by 2015” is a 10-point action agenda that places women’s and young people’s human rights, particularly sexual and reproductive rights, participation in decision-making, and accountability at the center of health programs and development efforts. RESURJ calls on all decision-makers to:
1. Expand decision-making opportunities for women and young people by ensuring their meaningful participation in all stages of design, monitoring and implementation of sexual and reproductive rights policies and programs at national, regional and international levels.
2. Prioritize sexual and reproductive rights in health systems strengthening and development programs so that integrated, high-quality services are available, accessible, and acceptable to all women and young people, particularly those most underserved. These services include comprehensive information on sexuality and contraception services and supplies (including emergency contraception, post exposure prophylaxis, male and female condoms); pregnancy care (antenatal and post natal care, skilled birth attendance, referral systems, and emergency obstetric care); safe abortion services and post-abortion care; access to assisted reproductive technologies; prevention, treatment, and care of sexually transmitted infections and HIV; prevention, treatment and care of reproductive cancers.
3. Guarantee universal access to this package of essential sexual and reproductive health services by providing sufficient and sustainable financing to achieve the training, deployment, and retention of necessary health workers; ensure equitable access and good quality services; free or subsidized care for those in need; and monitoring of potential disparities through regular collection and analysis of sex- and age- disaggregated data.
4. Protect women’s and young people’s human rights in sexual and reproductive health programs by guaranteeing that services are designed to respond to individual’s health needs and overcome barriers faced by marginalized groups, including through service provision that is free from stigma, coercion, discrimination and violence, based on full and informed consent, and that affirms the right to pleasure. Programs must ensure respect for women’s and adolescents’ privacy and confidentiality in accessing services, and their capacity to make free and informed choices regarding their sexual and reproductive lives from childhood to old age in all their diversiy; and pay special attention to marginalized groups of women and adolescents, including those with disabilities, living with HIV and AIDS, and of all sexual orientations and gender identities.
5. Create and sustain comprehensive, objective, and accurate sexuality education and information that is accessible and affirming for all children and youth in and out of schools. Comprehensive sexuality education programs promote sexual and reproductive rights, gender equality, self-empowerment, knowledge of the body, bodily integrity and autonomy, and relationship skills development; are free of gender stereotypes, discrimination, and stigma; and are respectful of children’s and adolescents’ evolving capacities to make choices about their sexual and reproductive lives.
6. Allocate funds targeted to HIV that protect and empower women and young people. In particular, guarantee funding for the provision of comprehensive sexual and reproductive health services that include comprehensive sexuality education; prevention, counseling, voluntary testing, treatment and care of HIV, as well as other sexually transmitted infections and reproductive cancers; and universal access to female and male condoms, microbicides and other women-initiated prevention technologies and vaccines.
7. Ensure that intellectual property agreements support states’ obligations to uphold the human rights of women and young people. Governments must make use of all trade-related intellectual property rights (TRIPS) flexibilities to ensure that intellectual property rights rules do not adversely affect individuals’ access to medicines, and generic medicines in particular, as well as other prevention technologies.
8. Foster an enabling environment for the realization of women’s and young people’s sexual and reproductive rights by guaranteeing women’s and young people’s economic, social, cultural, civil, and political rights; removing all structural, legal, and social barriers to the enjoyment of these rights; guaranteeing other underlying determinants of health (such as good nutrition, and access to clean water and sanitation); and achieving gender equality.
9. Strengthen transparency and ensure the establishment of effective monitoring and accountability mechanisms for health and education programs at the local, national, regional and international levels that are supported politically and financially. Monitoring and accountability mechanisms must adopt a systemic and sustained human rights approach, provide effective remedies and redress to rights holders when sexual and reproductive rights are violated, and lead to the constant improvement of existing programs and policies.
10. Guarantee that financing for development is sustainable and harmonized among donors and multilateral agencies and that sexual and reproductive rights and health programs are prioritized.
REALIZANDO LA JUSTICIA SEXUAL Y REPRODUCTIVA (RESURJ): ACCIÓN YA!
RESURJ es una alianza internacional de activistas feministas que buscan la plena implementación de los compromisos internacionales para garantizar todos los derechos y la salud sexual y reproductiva de las mujeres y jóvenes en 2015.
“RESURJ en 2015” es una agenda de 10 puntos que pone los derechos humanos de las mujeres y jóvenes, particularmente los derechos sexuales y reproductivos, la participación en la toma de decisiones y la rendición de cuentas en el centro de los programas de salud y las políticas de desarrollo.
RESURJ llama a todas y todos los tomadores de decisiones a:
10. Garantizar que el financiamiento para el desarrollo sea sustentable y armonizado entre donantes y agencias multilaterales y que los derechos sexuales y reproductivos y la salud sean priorizados en las áreas programáticas.