In a historic move for women's rights, the Spanish government approved a draft bill that would allow teenage girls to terminate their pregnancy without parental consent. The new bill is said to be brought in to counter the previous abortion law implemented by the conservative People's Party in 2015. Government spokeswoman Isabel Rodriguez remarked that the draft bill represented 'a new step forward for a democracy'.
If the bill becomes a law, Spain would be the first country to offer paid menstrual leave to its workers. Moreover, in Spain, voluntary abortion is allowed until 14 weeks of pregnancy.
Social Security System To Pay For Period Leave
Equality Minister Irene Montero said government institutions had to "discard taboos, stigmas and guilt regarding women's bodies", BBC reported. The sexual and reproductive health bill also aims to provide women with three days of sick leave for painful periods, which would later be discussed to increase up to five days for particularly intense or incapacitating pain. The country has ensured that the burden of providing paid leave to women workers during their monthly cycle does not fall on the employers. Therefore, the state social security system would pay for the break.
Abortions for teenage pregnancy and paid sick leave for menstruating women are components of the new bill. Moreover, the government has mentioned that it would tighten the noose around surrogacy, which is already banned in the country. The current government has also pledged to go a step ahead and ban the advertisements promoting surrogacy in the country. Spain believes that surrogacy is a type of violence against women and categorises any kind of forced pregnancy, abortion, sterilisation or contraception in the same way.
With the new campaign, the government seeks to promote the development of hormonal contraception for men, further stressing that contraception is not a woman's responsibility alone. The left-wing coalition government that came to power four years ago in the European country has kept women's rights as women of its operational areas.
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