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Global Health Challenges: International Reproductive Health
April 12, 2017 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
As part of the Global Issues Seminar series, panelists will explore the topic of International Reproductive Health.
Good sexual and reproductive health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being in all matters relating to the reproductive system. It implies that people are able to have a satisfying and safe sex life, the capability to reproduce, and the freedom to decide if, when, and how often to do so.
To maintain one’s sexual and reproductive health, people need access to accurate information and the safe, effective, affordable and acceptable contraception method of their choice. They must be informed and empowered to protect themselves from sexually transmitted infections. And when they decide to have children, women must have access to services that can help them have a fit pregnancy, safe delivery and healthy baby.
Every individual has the right to make their own choices about their sexual and reproductive health. In many developing countries, reproductive health problems are a leading cause of ill health and death for women and girls of childbearing age. Impoverished women suffer disproportionately from unintended pregnancies, unsafe abortion, maternal death and disability, sexually transmitted infections (STIs), gender-based violence, and other related problems. Numerous organizations work toward the goal of universal access to sexual and reproductive health and rights, including family planning.
Lisa Shannon is an author (A Thousand Sisters and Mama Koko and the Hundred Gunmen) and human rights activist known for spearheading grassroots and major media campaigns, including raising 20 million dollars for women survivors of war (founding Run for Congo Women and co-founding Sister Somalia). She was named as Shape Magazine’s “Women Who Shape the World” (2010) and Oprah’s Power List (2010) as one of “the world’s most powerful women.”
A former fellow at Harvard’s Center for Public Leadership and Carr Center for Human Rights, she holds a Masters in Public Administration from the Harvard Kennedy School and Honorary Doctorate from Georgetown University.
For nearly 4 years, Lisa has served as co-founder and now CEO of Everywoman Everywhere. Originally incubated at Harvard’s Carr Center for Human Rights, Everywoman Everywhere is coalition of nearly 1000 member experts and organizations from 122 nations advancing a global treaty to prevent violence against women and girls. This treaty aims to mandate nations to make and uphold rigorous commitments to end this violence, the most widespread human rights violation on earth.
Lisa has just returned from a month research trip investigating the impact of reproductive health policy (or lack thereof) on the lives of women and children in Kenya, DR Congo, and Somalia.
Sarah Hogg is a queer feminist activist from Carrboro, North Carolina. She is the Advocacy & Organizing Manager for NARAL Pro-Choice North Carolina and serves on the Board of Directors of the Carolina Abortion Fund.
At NARAL Pro-Choice NC, Sarah directs the organization’s campus organizing program program, oversees digital media and advocacy communications, and helps coordinate grassroots organizing activities across the state. Sarah’s expertise lies at the intersection of queer and trans liberation and reproductive freedom, and she focuses her work in the movement on advocating for sexual and reproductive health care that centers the LGBTQ+ community and pushing for queer and trans inclusion in the everyday work of reproductive health and rights organizations.
Sarah earned a B.A. in Anthropology from James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia, where her passion for reproductive rights was born.
Jina Dhillon, Policy & Advocacy Manager, joined Ipas North Carolina in October 2013, and has worked in the field of sexual and reproductive health rights for over 11 years.
At Ipas, Jina manages the global policy and advocacy technical strategy and support provided to Ipas country teams to ensure an enabling environment for safe abortion access. She has strong experience developing strategies for reform of restrictive abortion laws and responding to opposition threats, as well as ensuring broad interpretation of abortion laws and policies to maximize access.
Jina also leads Ipas country reporting to international human rights treaty monitoring bodies and monitoring adherence by governments to human rights obligations related to safe abortion. Jina has also provided general support on legal issues during her time with Ipas, including providing support for lawyer trainings and developing expertise around criminal procedure violations in the context of criminalization of abortion.
Jina graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Public Health, with honors, from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC-CH) in 2005, and received her J.D., with honors, and Master of Public Health degrees, with a Global Health Certificate, from UNC-CH in 2010.
Rebecca Harrington is the National Field Director for Population Connection and the Population Connection Action Fund. In her role as National Field Director, Rebecca oversees Population Connection’s field and outreach team, manages our grassroots efforts-including targeted campaigns in several targeted states-across the U.S., and organizes Capitol Hill Days, Population Connection’s annual advocacy weekend and lobby day. Prior to working at Population Connection, she worked with students with learning disabilities at the Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School. She graduated from Bates College.