Despite progress in safe deliveries, 830 women die every day due to pregnancy and delivery related complications and millions of women live with long lasting health problems as a result of them. Fistulas are one of the most serious delivery complications. Fistulas can lead to still births, incontinence, stigma, shame and social exclusion and in some cases the mother’s death. Approximately 2 million women live with the complication. Reasons enough to put the problem in the spotlight.
UN Member States failed to reach a consensus on a resolution on Sustainable Cities, Human Mobility and International Migration, the main theme of the 51st Commission on Population and Development, April 9th-13th. It is the third time in the past four years that the CPD remains without agreed conclusions.
Parliament calls on government to step-up the promotion of gender equality in Belgium's development cooperation
On March 15 the Belgian Chamber of People's Representatives adopted a resolution to promote gender equality and women's emancipation in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development. The resolution, an initiative by MP Fatma Phelivan, calls on the Belgian government to step-up it's efforts.
Upcoming event 26 April: ‘Beyond the stigma: fistula and safe delivery in the South’, Federal Parliament, Brussels
Date: Thursday 26 April 2018, 12:30-14:00
Place: Belgium's federal parliament, Room Jacques Brel, Leuvenseweg 13, 1000 Brussels.
Dr. Shershah Syed, well known fistula surgeon from Pakistan, Wendy Marijnissen, photographer and
Felipe Sere, Public Health Officer at Memisa, the Belgian NGO dedicated to the right to primary health care.
Despite the progress in safe deliveries, 830 women a day die due to birth or pregnancy related complications. 99% of these deaths occur in developing countries. In addition, millions of women suffer from health problems as a result of these complications.
Fistula is one of the most serious delivery complications. Every year there are an estimated 50,000 to 100,000 new cases and an estimated 2 million women are living with the complication. Especially women living in remote areas where health care services are absent run the risk of fistula. Fistula can lead to stillbirth, incontinence, shame, stigma and social exclusion and in some cases death. With the 2030 Agenda we committed to substantially decrease the number of maternal deaths and to ensure universal access to sexual and reproductive health and rights.
This lunch seminar is organised by the Parliamentarians for the 2030 Agenda in the run-up to Mothers’ Day. The seminar is free and open to all interested parties but requires registration by Friday April 20th the latest. For practical reasons, the language of this seminar will be English.
Sandwiches will be provided.
On 17 May 2018, the Belgian platforms Be-cause health and Educaid.be jointly organise an international conference on the intersection between health and education in international cooperation at the Egmont Palace, Brussels.
The 62nd session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) concluded March 23rd after a long week of negotiations. The CSW is the principal global intergovernmental body dedicated to the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women. Observers claim it was one of the most successful commissions in recent years, in terms of process and outcome. This session focused on the challenges and opportunities in achieving gender equality and the empowerment of rural women and girls, a population all too often disregarded and amongst those most left behind.
“In too many contexts, she has actually never decided anything. Telling her that she decides WITHOUT giving her the foundation upon which to do so, could be naïve at best – and irresponsible at worst. We cannot raise expectations of autonomy and agency without providing a foundation for this to actually happen.” Lina Abirafeh, Director of the Institute for Women’s Studies in the Arab World at the Lebanese American University in Lebanon and She Decides Champion’s message was clear. Abirafeh delivered the key note at the She Decides’ anniversary event in the Belgium parliament, which sought to answer the question ‘Can She Decide in times of crisis?’, focusing on women’s and girls’ access to SRHR during humanitarian crises.
Ten years following the first edition, UNESCO published an updated version of its International Technical Guidance on Sexuality Education. UNESCO developed the guidance in collaboration with UNFPA, UNAIDS, UNICEF, UNWOMEN and the WHO. Sensoa interviewed Karin Nilsson (RFSU, Sweden) who was part of this process.
Member of Flemish parliament Piet De Bruyn received an award from LGBTI umbrella organisation Çavaria for his political work as rapporteur for the rights of LGBTI people in the Council of Europe. In this European political forum the MP presented the first extensive European report that defends and promotes the rights of intersex people. Piet De Bruyn is grateful for this award: "It is a privilege to work with the LGBTI community towards an inclusive society. In the coming years I will continue to work for all LGBTI people. The more I travel around Europe, the more I realise how important it is to continue to work for equality and freedom for every LGBTI."
The report on intersex people will be guiding for LGBTI activists across Europe as it embeds intersex rights within the international human rights framework. For many years, the Flemish Member of parliament has been an active member of the ‘Parliamentarians for the 2030 Agenda’, the Belgian All-Party Parliamentary Group advocating sexual and reproductive health and rights for which Sensoa functions as the secretariat.