“The vote of the National Assembly reflects the consensus within the opinion”

After the vote, Thursday, November 24 in first reading, of the bill aimed at including the right to abortion in the Constitution, Sylvie Pierre-Brossolette, the president of the High Council for equality between women and men, highlights the popularity of such a measure.

The National Assembly voted in first reading, Thursday, a bill to include in the Constitution that “the law guarantees the effectiveness and equal access to the right to voluntary termination of pregnancy”. What do you think of the adoption of such a transpartisan text?

Of course, I am delighted with the result of the National Assembly’s vote, which confirms progress for women. It has a historic character, because it brings together many voices and on all benches. That such a majority was reached in the National Assembly reflects the consensus aroused by this measure within public opinion. I now appeal to senators to understand the evolution of French society on this subject. It would be a fine example for France to set by becoming the first country in the world to constitutionalize this right.

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Why is it necessary to constitutionalize the right to abortion?

It is for several reasons. Firstly, under the precautionary principle, in the current climate where we are witnessing the rise of conservatism in many countries and the seizure of power by majorities very hostile to social progress, and to women’s rights in particular .

In the uncertain period that we are going through politically, we do not know what the new balances may be that are emerging in the National Assembly and the Constitutional Council, guarantor of the constitutionality of laws. A new majority, marked by a certain conservatism and a retrograde vision of women’s rights, in particular the right to abortion, could come to power. Consequently, members hostile to this major achievement could be appointed to the Constitutional Council. Those who say that there is no risk of regression on this subject in France are wrong.

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This is the first argument in favor of consolidating the right to abortion and, in this respect, the only significant obstacle, although it is not foolproof, lies in its inclusion in the Constitution.

The second reason to engrave it in stone is that it is extremely rare in our country for a societal measure which caused so much debate and aroused so much passion at the time of the adoption of the Veil law [en 1975], be so consensual today. This is revealed by the survey conducted in October by the Viavoice Institute for the High Council for Equality (HCE), of which we have just had the results.

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