Respectful maternal care: the universal rights of women and newborns

Added on : 21 October 2019

By: Quality of Care Network Secretariat

The Global Respectful Maternal Care Council, convened by the White Ribbon Alliance, launched Respectful Maternal Care Charter: the universal rights of women and newborns.

The charter and new set of materials build on the 2011 charter and are designed to help educate, inform and advocate for all women to receive respectful care during pregnancy and childbirth.

The updated charter clarifies and clearly articulates the rights of women and newborns in the context of maternity care provided within a healthcare facility. It addresses the issue of disrespect and abuse toward women and newborns who are utilizing maternal and newborn care services and provides a platform for improvement by:

  • Raising awareness for women’s and newborns’ human rights guarantees that are recognized in internationally adopted United Nations and other multinational declarations, conventions and covenants;
  • Highlighting the connection between human rights guarantees and healthcare delivery relevant to maternal and newborn healthcare;
  • Increasing the capacity of maternal, newborn and child health advocates to participate in human rights processes;
  • Aligning women’s demand for high-quality maternal and newborn care with international human rights law standards;
  • Providing a foundation for holding governments, the maternity care system and communities accountable to these rights;
  • Supporting healthcare workers in providing respectful care to women and newborns and creating a healthy working environment.

Download the Respectful Maternal Care Charter

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