Primary Investigators: Professor Pia Riggirozzi (Southampton), York Lead Co-I: Professor Jean Grugel (IGDC/Politics), York Co-I: Dr Rodrigo Moreno Serra (CHE)
Partners: University of Southampton, University of York, Fiocruz (Brazil), Universidade Federal de Maranhão (Brazil), Universidad de Los Andes (Colombia), FLACSO (Honduras), Council of Ministries of Health for Central America - COMISCA, Regional office of the International Organisation for Migrations - IOM, Medicos Sin Fronteras (Mexico), United Nations Population Fund - UNFPA, FLACSO (Costa Rica)
Funder: ESRC GCRF
Sexual and reproductive health (SRH) is a key component of social development and wellbeing that is particularly at risk in contexts of displacement. Women and young girls who are driven by necessity to leave their countries in Central and South America face a range of gender-specific threats to their health and wellbeing, both in the process of migrating and in the places of settlement that they reach. Risks of rape and sexual assault, of sexual disease, of lack of contraception or sanitary materials are all features of processes of forced displacement in this region and elsewhere. Displaced women and girls face a number of obstacles in accessing and exercising their SRH rights.
This matters not only because securing these rights is integral to recognising the dignity of women and girls, but also because it is critical to enabling displaced women and girls to act as agents of development, and as productive social and economic agents, whose activities support the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals.
- identify the SRH needs of women and adolescent girls displaced from Central America to Mexico, and from Venezuela to Brazil and Colombia;
- analyse the challenges that displaced women and girls face in relation to SRH;
- assess the impact of displacement on local health systems in the area of SRH, noting the obligations of receiving and transit states to ensure that the human right to health for all is respected and protected;
- produce original primary data about gendered patterns of inequalities affecting access and delivery of care in women and girls' SRH during displacement.
It does so in order to propose human rights-based and deliverable responses addressing:
(a) the immediate and longer term SRH needs of women and adolescent girls in displacement, including guidance, skills and information to equip them to articulate their SRH rights; and
(b) a responsive Comprehensive Healthcare Model as a policy solution to protect the SRH rights of migrant women and girls in contexts of protracted displacement.
The project has been co-designed, and will be cooperatively carried out, through a partnership between academics and major UN and NGO agencies from the fields of migration, displacement, aid and development. It will be delivered by an interdisciplinary and international consortium that unites leading academics from health economics, political science, demography and social statistics, international development, human rights, gender studies, anthropology, migration and public health. The consortium represents a unique balance of relevant research and policy experience.