You are here

Action Coalition on Bodily Autonomy and Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights kicks off in BiH

Sarajevo, 8 July 2021 – The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) with French Embassy in BiH co-chaired the joint Action Coalition for Bodily Autonomy and Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) which has been launched today in Sarajevo in cooperation with the Agency for Gender Equality of Bosnia and Herzegovina and UN Women. The joint Coalition is based on the recommendations of the Generation Equality Forum held in Paris from 30 June to 2 July 2021. 

The event brought together activists, professionals and change-makers from BiH to define and announce investments and policies in regards to Bodily Autonomy and Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights. 
Rights on Bodily Autonomy and Sexual and Reproductive Health mean that girls and women in all their diversity can freely access comprehensive SRHR information, education, and services and are supported by societies in whole to make decisions about their bodies, sexuality, and reproduction, free from coercion, violence, and discrimination. 

Only girls and women who can make their own decisions in terms of having sex, using contraception, and seeking reproductive health care are considered to have autonomy in reproductive health decision-making and to be empowered to exercise their reproductive rights. Data shows that only 55% of girls and women are able to make their own decisions in all three dimensions of Bodily Autonomy in the world.

“Bodily autonomy is a human right. Unfortunately, for many women and girls life is still fraught with loss of bodily integrity and living with a lack of ability of making their own decisions. We at UNFPA will support multi-level partners to implement the Action Coalition on Bodily Autonomy and Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights launched today”, said UNFPA BiH Representative John Kennedy Mosoti. 

“The Generation Equality Forum in Paris came to a conclusion around a bold, action-oriented agenda to achieve gender equality. Strong commitments were made in regards to bodily autonomy and sexual and reproductive health and rights which will empower women and girls, in all their diversity, to make autonomous decisions about their bodies, sexuality and reproduction”, said H.E. Christine Toudic, French Ambassador to BiH. 

“Launched at the Generation Equality Forum in Paris last week, Action Coalitions are movements for bold advancement of gender equality. The Action Coalition on Bodily Autonomy and Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights, launched today, marks the beginning of joint efforts to deliver tangible impact on girls’ and women’s human rights in Bosnia and Herzegovina by 2026”, said David Saunders, UN Women Representative in BiH.

“The Generation Equality Forum launched a Global Acceleration Plan to advance gender equality by 2026. Bosnia and Herzegovina joins these global efforts which come at a critical moment, as we recover from the negative impacts of COVID-19 that particularly affected women and girls. The right of women and girls to make decision about their own bodies is fundamental when it comes to gender equality all around the world”, said Samra Filipović-Hadžiabdić, director of Agency for Gender Equality of BiH/Ministry of Human Rights and Refugees of BiH. 

The Action Coalition on Bodily Autonomy and SRHR is mobilizing governments, civil society, youth-led organizations, international organizations, philanthropies and the private sector to deliver transformational progress through four concrete actions to expand Comprehensive Sexuality Education, to increase the availability, accessibility, acceptability and quality of comprehensive abortion and contraception services as well as to increase SRHR Decision-Making and Bodily Autonomy and strengthen girls, women’s and feminist organizations and networks to promote and protect bodily autonomy and SRHR. 

For more information, please contact: 
Majda Prljača, UNFPA, at prljaca@unfpa.org or +38761171673