OPBP Completes Research for the League of Human Rights
Arushi Garg 30th March 2015

OPBP Completes Research for League of Human Rights for a submission to the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights in Dubská and Krejzová v. the Czech Republic

OPBP has prepared comparative law research on legal regulation of home birth for League of Human Rights (LHR), the Czech Republic, to assist with the submission of a referral request to the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) in the case of Dubská and Krejzová v. the Czech Republic, in which the LHR represents one of the applicants, Ms. Dubská.

The case arises from two applications of Czech women who were not allowed to give birth at home with the assistance of midwives. They complained to the ECtHR that the Czech law prohibiting health professionals to assist at home birth violated their right to private life under Article 8 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (ECHR). The ECtHR, however, found no violation of Article 8 based on the margin of appreciation argument, as there was no ‘European consensus’ on this complex matter of health care policy.

The OPBP team of graduate researchers, under the supervision of Dr Barbara Havelková, has put together a report covering eight jurisdictions, including Bosnia and Herzegovina, England and Wales, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Sweden, and Russia, in order to analyse general trends in the legal regulation of home birth and midwifery services and test whether there was a merit to the Court’s observation on the lack of consensus among states.

Further information about the LHR can be found here. The report can be downloaded here.