Legal rights and freedoms relating to reproduction and reproductive health
Reproductive rights involve an individual’s legal ability for making decisions about when and whether to have children. This is also known as reproductive autonomy. According to this right, everyone has the power of law to make choices regarding pregnancy and birth control.
Access to legal and safe abortion procedures for terminating a pregnancy is one such reproductive right. Reproductive rights allow access to:
- Family planning
- Sex education
- Birth control, including emergency contraception
- Assisted reproduction
- Sex education, birth control, or abortion for minors without a guardian’s or parent’s consent
- Permanent birth control or sterilization
- Men: Vasectomy (involves closing tubes that carry sperm to the penis from testicles)
- Women: Tubal ligation (involves closing of fallopian tubes to prevent eggs from mating with the sperm)
Attorneys at SBEMP (Slovak, Baron, Empey, Murphy & Pinkney) law firm provides professional legal advice and services to clients in Palm Springs, Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage, Inland Empire, Orange County, Coachella Valley, Costa Mesa, San Diego, New Jersey, New York, and surrounding communities.
Importance of Reproductive Rights
Reproductive rights are important because they provide access to safe reproductive health care. You may not be allowed to make decisions regarding birth control and pregnancy if these rights are restricted. This may lead to:
- Unwanted pregnancy, usually following incest or rape
- Complications in pregnancy that result in the death of mother
Advocates of reproductive rights usually focus on the passage of laws that enable equal access to healthcare services in these areas to people of all races, genders, religious beliefs, ethnicities, legal status, and income levels. This includes undocumented immigrants and individuals that are in prisons.
Reproductive rights apply to people of all genders and not just women. An estimated quarter of the male population becomes sexually active by the age of 15. They are at a risk of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), such as chlamydia or gonorrhea which may make them unable to father children at a later stage. They may also not be in favor of unplanned pregnancies.
Reproductive rights in men include access to services, such as:
- Family planning
- Birth control counseling
- Infertility treatments and counseling
- STD testing, treatment, and prevention
Age for Reproductive Rights
Age is often thought to be a factor in establishing reproductive rights. US federal law, in 1977, gave minors the right to obtain birth control without consent from parent. A few states allow minors between the age group of 12 and 17, equal access to prenatal care, pregnancy testing, and STD tests without parental consent.
However, other states may only allow minors that are already married, pregnant, or with children the ability to access these services. Males can enter sexual relationships or become sexually active before they turn 18. They require access to counseling and condoms to prevent STIs and pregnancy.
Access to Professional Care
There are gruesome reports of women that were forced to undergo sterilization or tubal litigation surgery in prison. These surgical procedures were not medically necessary. Socioeconomic levels and race of a woman can affect her access to reproductive rights. Certain studies show that doctors offer different birth control options based on the insurance coverage and race of women.
Lawyers at the SBEMP law firm serve clients from Palm Springs, Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage, Inland Empire, Orange County, Coachella Valley, Costa Mesa, San Diego, New Jersey, New York, and nearby locations for a range of legal practice areas.
Have any legal questions? Contact the Attorneys at SBEMP Law Firm:
For more information or to request a consultation please contact the law offices of SBEMP (Slovak, Baron, Empey, Murphy & Pinkney) by clicking here.
SBEMP LLP is a full service law firm with attorney offices in Palm Springs (Palm Desert, Inland Empire, Rancho Mirage, Indian Wells), CA; Indian Wells, CA; Costa Mesa (Orange County), CA; San Diego, CA; New Jersey, NJ; and New York, NY.
DISCLAIMER: This blog post does not constitute legal advice, and no attorney-client relationship is formed by reading it. This blog post may be considered ATTORNEY ADVERTISING in some states. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. Additional facts or future developments may affect subjects contained within this blog post. Before acting or relying upon any information within this newsletter, seek the advice of an attorney.