September 16, 2019
 In 2022-Improving Maternal Health

Country: France
Delegate Name: Audrey Krajewski

UN Women
Improving Maternal Health
Audrey Krajewski

France believes strongly in women’s rights. These beliefs are included but not limited to this are ensuring all women have access to safe pregnancies and births, legal abortions and usage of contraceptives, protection from sexual assualt/abuse and the ability to live freely and to the fullest. Unfortunately, women’s health varies dramatically around the world. With 247 million women living below the poverty line worldwide, what should be simple things like access to pads and tampons becomes impossible. France hopes to be a shining example of what can be achieved in countries worldwide.
According to the World Health Organization in a recent study, France provides the greatest healthcare system of any country in the world. France especially shines through taking care of women and their babies. This is evident in the mortality rate of 3 babies passing away for every 1,000 born. Additionally, France requires all women to take an 8 week leave after giving birth. Women can be paid £89 a day for 16 weeks of leave, and under government law are allowed to take 26 weeks before they must return to work. Another example of France’s world class health care for women dates back 55 years ago. On 27th December 1967, The Neuwirth law decriminalised the use of contraception in France. Eight years later, France legalized abortion under The Veil Law. In 1982, abortions became partially funded by the government and fully funded by the government in 2013. After Roe v Wade was overturned in June 2022, a movement in France gained traction to cement the right to abortion in the French constitution. Roughly 80% of all French citizens support the proposal, and France is currently awaiting a senate vote on the issue. Several foundations in France support women’s rights and health, most notable Foundation Des Femmes, which has donated 770,000 kits of basic necessities to abandoned and struggling pregnant women, as well as victims of sexual assault. France has seen success overall in protecting not just pregnant women, but all women. However, France realises that other countries struggle to do the same. Due to this, the government of France made a £90 million donation to “UNFPA Supplies Partnership” which is a flagship programme that provides modern contraceptives and life-saving maternal health medicines to countries with some of the highest maternal death rates in the world.
France understands that the COVID-19 pandemic has posed a huge threat to maternal health. France is interested in continuing to build and uphold our relationship with UNFPA (United Nations Population Fund), in addition to working with other more privileged countries to support our more underprivileged neighbours. France wants to learn more about what underprivileged propose, and how they can aid. All too often women die in childbirth or pregnancy, and enough is enough. France is interested in concrete solutions to help every woman and child, and believes it’s time all of us start taking the situation with the urgency it requires.

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