Key words: Sexual and reproductive rights, abortion, homelessness, migration, systemic racism, right to health, bodily autonomy, reproductive justice
1. This report examines gaps in Canada’s obligation to respect, protect, and fulfil the right to abortion. Abortion is a decriminalized healthcare procedure and is enshrined in numerous human rights instruments and ratified conventions. Despite this, many people in Canada face barriers when seeking abortion services and some are ultimately unable to access care.
2. These barriers do not fall equally and are magnified for those who experience marginalization rooted in systemic racism, classism, ableism, and heterosexism, thus engaging the right to nondiscrimination based on race, national and social origin, and other statuses. Set within this context, this report outlines generalized barriers and focuses on two areas: a) the impact of precarious migration status and resulting barriers to abortion access and b) the multiple and intersecting barriers faced by people experiencing homelessness.
3. Despite some advances, efforts to address unequal access have been inadequate. The gaps outlined in this report represent incomplete fulfillment of previous UPR recommendations and noncompliance with international human rights law.
Read the full report below.
This submission was written in collaboration with Justice for Migrant Workers, YWCA Hamilton, the Community Research Platform at McMaster University, the Barbra Schlifer Commemorative Clinic, and the Sexual Rights Initiative