Sweden co-organiser of conference on women’s rights throughout the world

On 2 March, an international conference entitled ‘She Decides’ will be held in Brussels. The conference is being co-organised by Sweden, Belgium, the Netherlands and Denmark.
“She Decides is taking a stand for women’s rights, in particular their obvious right to decide over their own bodies,” says Sweden’s Minister for International Development Cooperation and Climate Isabella Lövin.

Isabella Lövin
Isabella Lövin. Foto: Kristian Pohl/Regeringskansliet

She Decides aims to increase support for sexual health and family planning worldwide. The initiative is a response to the US President's reinstatement of the Mexico City Policy, banning financial support to foreign organisations that provide access to safe abortion or information about abortion, even if they do so with funds other than those provided by the US. Women's human rights, especially their sexual and reproductive health and rights, have very important implications for every woman's and girl's own health, socio-economic situation and personal development.

"We will mobilise political and financial support and show that there is a counterweight to the worrying developments we are seeing in the US and in other parts of the world," says Ms Lövin.

All funds will go to organisations that provide information about family planning and sexual health, including safe abortion, and/or provide related services. Funds will go to organisations that are affected by the Mexico City Policy.

The main goals are to:

  • keep health clinics open
  • continue providing a full range of sexual and reproductive health services to clients
  • continue advocating for law reforms to reduce the number of unsafe abortions

Government representatives from some 50 countries around the world will be invited to the conference, along with intergovernmental organisations, civil society and private actors. Participants will talk about practical efforts for women's health and rights, including access to safe abortions. Women and girls will bear witness to the crucial impact this has had on their lives.

Governments are called upon to support the She Decides initiative, both financially and politically. Since the launch of the initiative, many countries have already reacted in a positive way. Canada, Cape Verde, Finland and Luxemburg have already joined the initiative. Over 230 NGO's from 65 different countries have signed a petition, applauding the She Decides initiative and encouraging other allies to support She Decides.

Sweden welcomes additional support for the She Decides initiative via http://www.shedecides.eu

Read more about how support for sexual health and family planning can change lives at Swedish Foreign Policy News.

Contact

Annika Flensburg
Press Secretary to Minister for International Development Cooperation and Climate, and Deputy Prime Minister
Phone (switchboard) +46 8 405 10 00