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HRC39 – MRG co-hosts a high level panel discussion on “Indigenous Women’s Maternal Health and Maternal Mortality”

19 September 2018

MRG, Health Poverty Action, the Center for Reproductive Rights, UNFPA, UNICEF, UN Women, the Missions of Mexico, New Zealand and Canada held a high level panel discussion on Indigenous Women’s Maternal Health and Maternal Mortality in the margins of the Human Rights Council in Geneva, on Wednesday 19 September 2018, from 18:00 to 19:30.

Opening Remarks:

AmbassadorSocorro Flores Liera, Permanent Representative of Mexico to the United Nations in Geneva


Monica Ferro, Director, UNFPA Office in Geneva

Main presentation of the Fact-sheet:

Claire Thomas, Acting Director, Minority Rights Group International


– Aishatu Manu, Programme Lead on Youth, Climate Change and Gender, FIMI Africa

– Erika Yamada, member of the UN Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

– Victoria Tauli Corpuz, UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

Closing remarks:

Ambassador Jillian Dempster, Permanent Representative of New Zealand to the United Nations in Geneva


Available data shows that, across the globe, indigenous women die in pregnancy and childbirth more often than other women.

This is one of the conclusions of a recent study on indigenous women’s maternal health and maternal mortality*. This panel discussion will provide an opportunity to present the main data findings of that fact-sheet and to discuss with Member States and Indigenous women leaders and activists what is being done/would need to be done in order to address those disparities.

Target 3.1 of the Sustainable Development Goals aims at reducing the global maternal mortality ratio by 2030. This goal cannot be attained if the particular vulnerability of the populations most affected, including indigenous women, is not adequately addressed.

*Factsheet accessible at: