and European human rights law recognises sexual and reproductive rights as
human rights and they are linked to the fundamental right to health and gender
equality. These include the right to sexual self-determination, combating
gender-based violence, family planning, sex education as well as maternity, pre
and postnatal care.
21 May 2021, in the European Parliament’s committee for “Women's Rights and
Gender Equality”, MEP Pedrag Matić (S&D, CR) presented an Own-initiative
report about the situation regarding sexual and reproductive health and rights in the
EU in relation to women's health.
report highlights very different topics that are of existential importance to
the lives and health of many people, especially women, and it also refers to
the social insurance system in terms of benefit laws. The report describes
deficits that prevent people from exercising their rights. The report also
focuses on the controversial issue of legal and safe abortions.
24 June 2021, the European Parliament adopted a resolution, based on its
own-initiative report: sexual and reproductive health, the associated rights as
well as the well-being, health, safety and life of women should be promoted and
Demands on the Member States
States are encouraged to establish effective strategies for universal access to
quality and accessible services in the sexual and reproductive health sectors.
The public health services and the health insurance institutions should provide
preventive examinations such as mammograms or bone density measurements. In
addition to promoting comprehensive sex education for young people and
reviewing legislation covering legal abortions, Member States should also
ensure access to fertility treatment, contraceptives and maternity, pre and
postnatal care. In particular, it calls for the elimination of discrimination.
Requirements facing the EC
EC is called upon to make full use of its responsibilities in the health policy
sector, especially with regard to the EU4Health action programme. Developing
common European standards for maternity, pre and postnatal care is also called
for in addition to exchanging best practices. Action is needed in the health
policy sector in view of the effects of emergencies such as the coronavirus
pandemic. Specific steps are also needed to protect sexual and reproductive
health and rights, starting with the appointment of an EU special