Kommentaren ingick i ett uttalande som Elizabeth O’Casey gjorde till en rapport som en arbetsgrupp om diskriminering av kvinnor och kvinnors hälsa lämnat till rådet. I rapporten, som får beröm av IHEU, står det bland annat:
[Women] are subjected to humiliating treatment within the health-care system because of their gender identity and sexual orientation, sometimes expressly in the name of morality or religion, as a way of punishing what is considered “immoral” behaviour. [...]
The social, religious and cultural factors that disregard the dignity of girls and women must be tackled to achieve women’s right to equality in health and safety. [...]
Throughout their life cycle, women’s bodies are instrumentalized and their biological functions and needs are stigmatized and subjected to a politicized patriarchal agenda. States have also often treated women instrumentally as tools with which to implement population programmes and policies. This is sometimes carried out through the use of criminal sanctions and often under the guise of protecting women’s health and safety and with cultural or religious justifications.
Much of the discrimination in access to health services and the resulting preventable ill health of women, including maternal mortality and morbidity and infertility, can be attributed to the instrumentalization of women’s bodies for political, cultural, religious and economic purposes. [...]
The Working Group reiterates that the enjoyment of the right to freedom of religion or belief cannot be used to justify gender discrimination and therefore should not be regarded as a justification for hindering the realization of women’s right to the highest attainable standard of health.