Panel on forced and coerced sterilization of women and trans men, which took place during the 59th Annual meeting of the UN Commission on the Status of Women in 2015.
Panel Moderator: Malayah Harper, UNAIDS
Teresia Njoki Otieno, International Community of Women Living with HIV
Justus Eisfeld, Global Action for Trans* Equality (GATE)
Andrea Parra, Action Program for Equality and Social Inclusion (PAIIS),
Camila Gianella, Centre on Law & Social Transformation
Forced and coercive sterilization and contraception is a widespread form of institutionalized violence against women and a part of a systemic pattern of violations of sexual and reproductive rights experienced globally by women and transgender men in marginalized populations. Instances of forced and coercive sterilization of racial and ethnic minorities, including, but not limited to, indigenous women, women living in poverty, women living with HIV, women in prison, women with disabilities, and transgender men, have been increasingly documented around the world, and yet these violations of human rights persist.
Although sterilization can be a valid reproductive choice any sterilization that takes place involuntarily, meaning without the full, free and informed consent of the woman herself is a violation of her human rights. Additionally coerced sterilization, for example sterilization that has been compelled in exchange for incentives such as loans or cash payments; or access to nutrition or other services or supports or is a result of persuasion via unequal power dynamics, misinformation, exaggeration of the risks, abuse or discrimination also constitutes a serious violation of fundamental human rights to bodily integrity, informed consent, and to our rights as women and transgender men to make our own reproductive choices.