09. Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure and SRHR

The aim of SDG 9 is to “build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation” (United Nations, 2016). This encompasses transportation and the distribution of information, electrical power, water, and other critical resources. It also concerns job creation and the development of new skills and technologies.

The  Southern African Development Community (SADC) region faces an increasing gap between the demand for infrastructure and the available resources. SADC member states adopted the Infrastructure Development Maser Plan in 2012 to address, energy, water, transport, tourism, meteorology and telecommunications development (Political Economy Southern Africa, 2017). With increasing urbanisation and low growth, there are constraints on implementing this which could have a direct impact on SRHR by hindering the flow of information, preventing access to sanitation and health and reducing the available supply of clean energy.

There are various conventions and laws that support industry, innovation and infrastructure as envisioned in SDG 9. The sections relevant to SRHR can be found below.

You can see how SDG 9 – Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure – relates to the SRHR of different groups below.

Women SRHR of Women and Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure.
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With innovative shifts occurring in most industries worldwide it has become apparent that women comprise only one fifth of the researchers involved in these changes. As such, women are less frequently in roles which allow them to advocate for solutions which improve their SRHR (UN Women, 2017b)

Human Rights Conventions and agreements for Women and SRHR.
The convention on the elimination of all forms of discrimination against women.
  • Article 6.0 States Parties shall take all appropriate measures, including legislation, to suppress all forms of traffic in women and exploitation of prostitution of women.
  • Article 10.0 States Parties shall take all appropriate measures to eliminate discrimination against women in order to ensure their equal rights with men in the field of education.
  • Article 11.2 States Parties shall take all appropriate measures to prevent discrimination against women on the grounds of marriage or maternity and ensure their effective right to work.
  • Article 12.1 States Parties shall take all appropriate measures to eliminate discrimination against women in the field of health care in order to ensure, on a basis of equality of men and women, access to health care services, including those related to family planning.
  • Article 12.2 States Parties shall ensure to women appropriate services in connection with pregnancy, confinement and the post-natal period, granting free services where necessary, as well as adequate nutrition during pregnancy and lactation.
  • Article 16.1 States Parties shall take all appropriate measures to eliminate discrimination against women in all matters relating to marriage and family relations.
The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
  • Article 12.0 The States Parties to the present Covenant recognize the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health. This includes the provision for the reduction of the stillbirth-rate and of infant mortality and for the healthy development of the child.
  • Article 10.0 The States Parties to the present Covenant recognize that special protection should be accorded to mothers during a reasonable period before and after childbirth. During such period working mothers should be accorded paid leave or leave with adequate social security benefits. Absolute protection and assistance should be accorded to the family … particularly for its establishment and while it is responsible for the care and education of
United Nations Declaration of Commitment on HIV/AIDS.
  • Section 54 By 2005, reduce the proportion of infants infected with HIV by 20 per cent, and by 50 per cent by 2010, by: ensuring that 80 per cent of pregnant women accessing antenatal care have information, counselling and other HIV prevention services available to them, increasing the availability of and by providing access for HIV-infected women and babies to effective treatment to reduce mother-to-child transmission of HIV, as well as through effective interventions for HIV-infected women, including voluntary and confidential counselling and testing, access to treatment, especially anti-retroviral therapy and, where appropriate, breast milk substitutes and the provision of a continuum of care.
  • Section 60 By 2005, implement measures to increase capacities of women and adolescent girls to protect themselves from the risk of HIV infection, principally through the provision of health care and health services, including sexual and reproductive health, and through prevention education that promotes gender equality within a culturally and gender sensitive framework;
  • Section 61 By 2005, ensure development and accelerated implementation of national strategies for women’s empowerment, promotion and protection of women’s full enjoyment of all human rights and reduction of their vulnerability to HIV/AIDS through the elimination of all forms of discrimination, as well as all forms of violence against women and girls, including harmful traditional and customary practices, abuse, rape and other forms of sexual violence, battering and trafficking in women and girls.