In June 2009, the UN Human Rights Council adopted a landmark resolution recognising maternal mortality as a pressing human rights concern.
It has since adopted two resolutions requesting the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) to produce a second thematic report on the issue, to convene an expert workshop and to develop practical guidance to assist states, the United Nations system and all stakeholders in applying human rights-based frameworks to programmes and policies aimed at preventing maternal mortality and morbidity.
The OHCHR has developed a technical guidance on the application of a human rights-based approach to the implementation of policies and programmes to reduce preventable maternal morbidity and mortality.
As this is the first time a technical guidance has been launched by the High Commissioner, the HR Council is keen to see how it will be implemented.
The High Commissioner is expected to report back to the Council on the progress made in two years.
Building on these responses from the OHCHR, Save the Children Geneva organised a side event (during the 21st Human Rights Council Meeting) to explore the linkages between budgets, accountability and human rights for improving maternal and child health.
The event was a timely opportunity to share and gather best practices on budgeting for child and maternal health, and on the use of budget analysis by civil society to monitor state performance and advocate for change in budgetary allocations.