The Public Health Association of Australia and the Family Planning Alliance Australia have today launched a new policy document, the Melbourne Proclamation, designed to advance sexual and reproductive wellbeing in Australia.
The “Melbourne Proclamation” provides recommendations in ten key action areas, developed to reflect discussions at the recent Second National Sexual and Reproductive Health Conference.
“The Second National Sexual and Reproductive Health Conference was held in Melbourne at the end of last year, and since the conference our organisations have been working to develop a comprehensive policy for advancing sexual and reproductive wellbeing based on the conference outcomes,” says Professor Angela Taft, PHAA spokesperson and Convenor of the Conference Organising Committee.
“The conference brought together over 200 sexual and reproductive health experts and practitioners from around the country and overseas to discuss the key challenges and ways forward in addressing both fertility and infertility issues.
“The recommendations contained in the ‘Melbourne Proclamation’ reflect current issues around fertility and infertility, the growing trend towards older parenting and the controversial issue of surrogacy.”
It also focuses on the needs of our diverse community, including migrant and refugee communities, says Prof Taft.
“Other hot topics covered include responses to unintended pregnancy, the impact of age on infertility for both men and women, sexuality in later life, issues around surrogacy at both national and international levels and particular issues for marginalised communities.
“Regardless of background, race, age, gender, sex or sexuality, all Australians are entitled to the best possible reproductive and sexual health.”
“This means having access to safe and affordable services that give individuals the opportunity to make informed decisions about their health and fertility,” says Lynne Jordan, FPAA spokesperson and CEO of Family Planning Victoria.
“The key to achieving sexual and reproductive health and wellbeing in Australia’s complex, diverse and longer-lived population is to place sexual and reproductive rights at the centre of an integrated policy and program planning framework,” says Prof Taft.
“The ‘Melbourne Proclamation’ provides a foundation for the development of such an approach at the national level.”
Advancing sexual and reproductive wellbeing in Australia: the Melbourne Proclamation is available on the PHAA website.