Health Watch
  • International Day of Action For Women’s Health which falls on the 28th May every year strives for women’s rights, especially in the area of their sexual and reproductive health.
  • This year, with increasing reports of violation of women’s rights worldwide, it is important for all women to stand united and speak in one voice against violence and discrimination.

How The International Day of Action For Women's Health Came About?

Thirty years ago on 28th May 1987, at the 4th International Women's Health Meeting in Costa Rica, it was proposed to celebrate 28th May as the International Day of Action for Women's Health to stand up and speak for women's sexual and reproductive health rights, a grossly neglected area despite claims of safeguarding women's rights and talks of women empowerment.

The Women's Global Network for Reproductive Rights (WGNRR) is spearheading the re-launch of the 28th May campaign following 30 years of struggle and activism, with several issues still remaining unaddressed and a spurt in crime against women. 
International Day of Action For Women’s Health 2017 - Women’s Health Matters

In collaboration with over 20 international, regional and national organizations, they plan to mobilize the support and encourage women worldwide to demand that their sexual and reproductive health be made an integral part of development agendas of governments all over the world.

What are Women's Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR)? 

It is unfortunate that in spite of women excelling in several fields and contributing to the family economy, as well as, their country's development, they still are unable to decide on matters concerning their basic sexual and reproductive rights.

Surprisingly, violence and discrimination is not restricted to the domestic setting alone. There are numerous instances of institutional violations of the sexual and reproductive rights of women that include:
  • Denial of safe and legal abortions
  • Forced sterilizations
  • Lack of adequate care during pregnancy, childbirth and postpartum
  • Lack of and denial of access to contraceptives including emergency contraception
The Women's Global Network for Reproductive Rights (WGNRR) urges women on this occasion to reiterate their demand of basic health rights to be acknowledged and for governments the world over to take action.

Our Health, Our Rights, Our Lives - The Theme For 2017

Each year on the occasion of International Day of Action For Women's Health on28th May women worldwide continue to stand up and demand, that they be allowed to decide for themselves on all aspects of their bodies including the decision whether to have a baby or not, decide about their sexual identities or sexual orientation without coercion, violence or discrimination.

At a time when reports of women being subject to blatant violation of their rights, sexual harassment at home and work, and failure to safeguard their basic rights, the International Day of Action For Women's Health encourages women to speak out, mobilize support and connect with likeminded persons and organizations to spread the word.

The WGNRR has encouraged women and allies globally to 'Mobilize, Speak Out, and Take Action - let's stand together, voice our resistance, and remind world leaders that Women's Health Matters!'

Women and women's organizations could hold public rallies, conduct workshops, organize street plays, use the press and media to spread the message and create global awareness. Organizations in various parts of the world can collaborate with one another and help in making the day a grand success to achieve their goal.

In summary, it is the duty of every individual, community, country and the world as a whole to recognize and protect every woman's right to her sexual and reproductive health.

References :
  1. Mark the Day! May 28 2017 - (
  2. May 28: International Day of Action for Women's Health, Women's Rights Defenders - (
Source: Medindia

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