May 28: International Day of Action for Women’s Health, Women’s Rights Defenders

In commemoration of 30 years of struggle and activism, women’s rights defenders and activists worldwide are re-launching May 28, the International Day of Action for Women’s Health.

On May 28 1987, during the IV International Women’s Health Meeting in Costa Rica, women’s rights activists proposed to celebrate May 28 as the International Day of Action for Women’s Health, as a means to speak out on SRHR issues faced by women and girls all over the world. Nearly 30 years on, activists warn that the full realization of all women’s SRHR remains far from being addressed, as “women’s health” has often been reduced to a limited understanding of maternal health, overlooking the actual needs of all women in their diversities. As a result, significant challenges persist, in terms of recognizing sexual rights in addition to reproductive rights, ensuring universal access to contraceptives and safe and legal abortion, as well as comprehensive sexuality education for young people, among other critical SRHR issues.

The Women’s Global Network for Reproductive Rights (WGNRR) is undertaking the re-launch of the May 28 campaign in collaboration with over 20 international, regional and national organizations, in an effort to mobilize women all over the world to demand the inclusion of their human right to health in the Post-2015 Development Agenda, of which our sexual and reproductive health and rights are an integral part. Interested individuals and organizations are encouraged to visit www.may28.org to learn more about the campaign, the May 28 Call for Action, what they can do in their communities and ways in which they can participate.