Struggles over women’s rights to sexual and reproductive health have been central in advancing women’s human rights in general. They remain, even in France and the UK, challenged and contested in ways that have often thwarted the genuine advance of legal equality.
At an event organised by the French Embassy in the UK, our expert panel of speakers will discuss what remains to be done for girls and women to gain full possession of their sexual and reproductive rights, and the expected impacts on their health and wellbeing.
Held in the run up to the Generation Equality Forum in Paris from 30 June to 2 July, our panel will explore how these rights are being enacted across the globe, from developing countries to Europe.
Speakers include Dame Lesley Regan, who during her tenure as President of Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (2016-2019), co-chaired the National Women’s Health Task Force with Jackie Doyle-Price MP (then Health Minister) and authored “Better for Women”. This hard-hitting report promotes a life-course approach to the delivery of women’s health services and shines a light on many historically taboo subjects such as period problems, pelvic pain, contraception, abortion, domestic violence, menopausal and maternal mental health issues.
She is joined by Ellen Annandale of the University of York, UK, whose research focuses on gender inequalities in health and women’s reproductive healthcare. She is the author of Women’s Health and Social Change and The Palgrave Handbook of Gender and Health (with Ellen Kuhlmann).
Join in the conversation as we take stock of achievements, look at where progress has stalled and discuss where there is still much to be done.
This event is hosted live on Zoom Webinar. You’ll receive a link to join a couple of days before the event takes place and a reminder an hour before. During the event, you can ask questions via a Q&A function but audience cameras and microphones will remain muted throughout.
This is one of two events presented by the French Embassy in the UK exploring important contemporary issues. You may also enjoy Protecting the Oceans to Preserve the Climate on Sunday 13 June.
About the speakers
Professor Dame Lesley Regan is Secretary General of FIGO, Chair of Wellbeing of Women and a member of the NHS Assembly. She was the 30th President of Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (2016-2019) and only the second woman to be elected to this position and the first in 64 years. Dame Lesley is a Professor of Obstetrics & Gynaecology at Imperial College London and Consultant at St Mary’s Hospital in London. Having graduated from the Royal Free Hospital School of Medicine, London in 1980, Dame Lesley pursued her training at Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge, where she first became enthused by clinical and laboratory research, completing her MD on miscarriage. She went on to set up the world’s largest recurrent miscarriage clinic at St Mary’s Hospital in London. In 2015 she received a Doctorate of Science from University College London for her contribution to women's health. In 2020 she was awarded a DBE for her services to women’s health in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours List.
Ellen Annandale is Professor of Sociology at the University of York, UK, where she was Head of Department between 2013 and 2017. She was awarded her PhD in Sociology from Brown University USA and has Honorary Doctorate from Umeä University, Sweden. She is Chair of Trustees of the Foundation for the Sociology of Health and Illness, former Editor-in-Chief of the international journal Social Science & Medicine, and the present Coordinator of the European Sociological Association’s Research Network on the Sociology of Health and Illness. Her research has focused on gender inequalities in health and women’s reproductive healthcare. Her publications include Women’s Health and Social Change (Routledge) and The Palgrave Handbook of Gender and Health (with Ellen Kuhlmann) (Palgrave). With colleagues at the University of York and two NHS Hospital Trusts, she has recently completed a research project funded by the National Institute of Health Research on Interactional Practices of Decision-making During Childbirth in Maternity Units.