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.
During the diplomatic days, vice prime minister and minister of development cooperation Alexander De Croo addressed the Belgian diplomatic staff on sustainable development. The Minister pointed out the progress made over the past ten years with regard to human rights in half of the partner countries of the Belgian Development Cooperation. With the Ibrahim Index on African Governance in his hand, he underlined that human and economic development go hand in hand with progress regarding human rights, gender equality and non-discrimination of minorities and sexual minorities.
Upcoming event 8 March: "Can She Decide in Times of Crisis?" Spotlight on women's and girls' sexual and reproductive health and rights in emergencies
On 8 March, International Women’s Day, the Parliamentarians for the 2030 Agenda hold a lunch seminar, as a She Decides' anniversary event in the federal parliament, Brussels (practical information below).
Spotlight on SRHR in emergencies
Globally, 135 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance. They face the consequences of conflict or natural disasters. Of all individuals in need, about 1 in 4 is a woman or girl at reproductive age. In times of crisis, many would like to prevent or postpone pregnancy or delivery. While family planning is one of the most life-saving, empowering and cost-effective interventions for women and girls, an overwhelming gap exists in emergency responses. During humanitarian crises, women and girls also run a higher risk of suffering sexual and gender-based violence, such as rape, trafficking and prostitution, forced pregnancies and forced marriages.
Ensuring that women and girls fulfil their sexual and reproductive health and rights is not considered a priority in humanitarian interventions and lacks funding. Consequently, many women and girls are forced to live with an unmet need for family planning, face risky deliveries or a violation of their sexual and bodily integrity, in addition to the traumas of conflict, disaster and displacement. Yet, evidence shows that it is possible to provide sexual and reproductive health services in even the most challenging settings.
Welcome by Karine Lalieux, MP, Vice President of the Parliamentarians for the 2030 Agenda
What can WE do to ensure that She Decides in times of crisis?
Keynote by Dr. Lina Abirafeh, Director Institute for Women’s Studies in the Arab World at the Lebanese American University in Beirut and ‘She Decides Champion’
Attention for sexual and reproductive health and rights in Belgium’s humanitarian aid policy and support (TBC)
Delivering sexual and reproductive health services during crises
Catherine Giboin, Vice President Médecins du Monde France
Closing by Sabien Lahaye-Battheu, MP, Vice President ‘Parliamentarians for the 2030 Agenda
Moderation by Petra De Sutter, Senator
Date: March 8, 2018 - 12h30 to 14h
Venue: Belgian Federal Parliament, Room Jacques Brel,
13 Rue de Louvain, 1000 Brussels
Conference language English. Sandwiches provided.
Participation is free but please register here by Friday March 2nd.
Please present yourself at the entrance of parliament with your ID, no later than 12h15.
This event is supported by Countdown 2030 Europe, Because She Counts