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Center for Reproductive Rights. “Reproductive Rights and Women with Disabilities: A Human Rights Framework.” Center for Reproductive Rights, January 2002.


Using a human rights framework, the Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR) teases out the intersection of reproductive freedom and restriction on this freedom due to mental illness, disability, and physical disability. One of the central claims made is that women with disabilities are entitled to a number of reproductive freedoms within the international human rights framework including “the right to equality and nondiscrimination, the right to marry and found a family, the right to reproductive health, and the right to physical integrity.  CRR employs the 1993 Vienna Declaration and Progamme of Action, which dictates, that “special attention must given in order to ensure non-discrimination, and the equal enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms by disabled persons.” (1) CRR promotes this Declaration to support their central argument that all women with disabilities deserve equal rights and protection concerning their personhood and reproductive freedoms. This article is an accessible read and succinctly articulates the international consensus concerning the rights of women with disabilities. The article is written in a way that first explains the international human rights law and policy, then provides specific international consensus documents, and finally gives examples of certain national laws and policies and the issues and challenges associated with those policies in relation to human rights laws. This is a useful introduction for anyone interested in the reproductive freedom of women with disabilities. It is also for anyone with an interest in international human rights law as it pertains to women with disabilities.  


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Legislation/policy   Disability justice   Intersectionality   Human rights