Special Rapporteur Right to Health Report Highlights Special Concerns of Women
Tuesday, May 22, 2012 2:15 PM

The 2012 report of the UN Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health includes a section that highlights the special concerns of women. The report argues that “it is critical that a gendered perspective be adopted in the formulation and implementation of occupational health laws and policies.” The report goes on to highlight the difficulty faced by women who are more likely than men to work in the informal economy and more likely to face violence and harassment in the workplace as well as exposure to hazardous working conditions. Finally, the report highlights the health risks faced by women of childbearing age whose work exposes them to harmful chemicals. Exposure to harmful chemicals has been linked to birth defects and congenital disorders. Yet, women are often less able to access healthcare for work-related illnesses than men.