Forced Sterilisation in the European Union

Forced sterilisation of persons with disabilities is a pervasive abuse and a gross violation of their fundamental rights. Nevertheless, it is ongoing and widespread across Europe and worldwide.

EDF under its commitment to women’s rights and gender equality is advocating to end forced sterilisation on all Members States. 

What EDF is asking for

The European Commission presented a proposal for a Directive on Combating Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence to the European Parliament and the Council on the 8th of March 2022. We demand that forced sterilisation must be prohibited and criminalised by the EU and all its EU Member States. We call for:

  • The criminalisation of forced sterilisation under the proposed EU Directive on combating violence against women and domestic violence
  • The criminalisation of forced sterilisation by all EU Member States with no exception based on disability or legal capacity
  • The adoption of measures at EU and Member States levels to ensure access to justice, including adequate criminal sanctions, and compensation for victims
  • The ratification of the Istanbul Convention by the EU and all its Member States

Read our report

Our report “Forced sterilisation of persons with disabilities in the European Union” reveals that at least 13 EU countries still authorise forced sterilisation. Due to this unacceptable situation, we are calling for the EU to insert a total ban on this practice in the upcoming legislation on combatting violence against women.  

The report is also available in Easy-To-Read


Please note that information from the launch of the report will be progressively updated. 
The information for Austria has been revised. There is no legal possibility in Austria to authorise forced sterilisation against a person’s will.

Act to end forced sterilisation in the EU

Harmful and terrible practices may still take place, in silence and impunity, in all EU member states. Join us to #EndForcedSterilisation. 

Related information

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Contact

Marine Uldry
Marine Uldry

Senior Human Rights Officer
marine.uldry@edf-feph.org