Reproductive rights refer to the rights of individuals to decide whether they would like to reproduce and have reproductive health. The reproductive rights generally cover the individual’s rights to plan his/her family, terminate a pregnancy, use contraceptives, accesses reproductive health services, and learn about reproduction and sex in schools CITATION Geo17 p “pg. 14” l 1033 (Watts pg. 14). Over time, reproductive rights have been treated as women’s rights especially in areas such as abortion, procreation, and adoption. However, men also have reproductive rights including issues such as paternity, frozen embryos, adoption, and abortion. The supreme court of the United States recognizes reproductive rights as fundamental human rights to procreation, family relationships, contraception, and child rearing. Also, the fourteenth amendment of the U.S constitution provides for rights personal privacy. Even as such, vulnerable populations such as individuals who are disabled, a particular racial/ethnic minority group, immigrants, individuals who are gay or lesbian, or trans/non-binary, etc. have received unequal treatment about reproduction. The purpose of this paper is to explain how trans-gender groups have received unequal treatment about reproduction and how reproductive rights and a reproductive justice framework would each address their reproductive issues.
Transgender is a term used to refer to individuals whose gender expression does not match their assigned sex at birth. The transgender people have faced both social and economic marginalization CITATION SJa15 p “pg. 1354” l 1033 (S. James-Abra, L.A. Tarasoff, d. Green, R. Epstein, S. Anderson, S. Marvel, L.S. Steele, L.E. Ross pg. 1354). These people have faced harassment, discrimination, and rejection in their own families as well as the society which has often led to them being rendered homeless and sometimes have to depend on sex in exchange for food and survival. They are denied access to proper shelters due to their sexual orientation. In the healthcare sector, the transgender groups are faced with discrimination with regards to access of insurances to cover the cost of mental health services, cross-sex hormone therapy, or gender affirmation surgery. Services such as gender affirmation surgery are quite safe and effective. Therefore, individuals should be allowed to undergo reproductive health care rather than denying them such opportunities with the hope that psychological therapy will change their sexual expression.
Reproductive rights are considered as human rights. Transgender people are human and thus should be able to enjoy the rights just like any other ordinary human. The reproductive rights, for instance in the United States, are provided for by the Supreme Court where they are recognized as the fundamental human rights. The constitution of the United States also provides for rights to privacy. Therefore, an individual’s body should be their business, and no one should stigmatize or discriminate the transgender groups.
The reproductive justice framework is a subset of reproductive rights. When dealing with reproductive justice, transgender people are faced with double discrimination, social stigma, and health care related complications. However, that should not be a case. The transgender people should be included in the reproductive justice campaigns as well as gender services in the medical facilities. All genders should be treated equally since the medical procedures for transgender groups are safe and effective. The surgery does not change the way an individual function. Many critics tend to suggest psychological therapies which in the long run cannot help reverse the sexual expression of an individual.
BIBLIOGRAPHY S. James-Abra, L.A. Tarasoff, d. Green, R. Epstein, S. Anderson, S. Marvel, L.S. Steele, L.E. Ross. “Trans people’s experiences with assisted reproduction services: a qualitative study.” Human Reproduction (2015): 1365-1374.
Watts, Geoff. “Sexual health and reproductive rights at a crossroad.” The Lancet (2017): 1-24.
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