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UN tests Bolivia on women’s rights

    July 10, 2015

    The Bolivian authorities must take decisive action to tackle discrimination and other barriers women and girls face when trying to exercise their sexual and reproductive rights, said Amnesty International as the country is up for scrutiny by the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women on 14 July.

    A new Amnesty International briefing to the UN Committee evaluates the situation and gives a series of recommendations to the Bolivian authorities.

    “Bolivia has made great progress on protecting women’s rights in the past 10 years, including passing new laws to guarantee gender equality and to protect women from violence. But there’s still a very long way to go to live up to these commitments, and the lack of effective action and financial investment means that women and girls, particularly indigenous women and those living in poverty, are still suffering abuse,” said Fernanda Doz Costa, Americas Researcher at Amnesty International who will be in Geneva for the session, and has been conducting research on the issue.

    “Good intentions are no longer enough. What women and girls in Bolivia need is for the government to put in practice concrete mechanisms to ensure they can access basic rights such as contraception, maternal health care and safe abortions when needed.”

    Amnesty International’s briefing to the UN body highlights some of the ongoing human rights violations faced by women and girls across the country – particularly members of indigenous communities. These include lack of information available and barriers to access sexual and reproductive health services, particularly modern contraception and safe abortions.

    Talking points:
    • Discrimination against women and girls.
    •Limits to women and girls’ sexual and reproductive rights.
    • High levels of maternal deaths and lack of access to maternal health care services, particularly for indigenous women.
    •Lack of access to information and contraception.
    • Lack of access to safe abortions.

    Read more:
    Bolivia: Briefing to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (Briefing, June 2015)

    For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact Elizabeth Berton-Hunter, Media Relations 416-363-9933 ext 332