Published on June 4, 2021 News

Victims of unlawful sterilisations are one step closer to compensation, the Act passed the House of Representatives

On 4 June 2021, the House of Representatives adopted the Act enabling victims of illegally performed sterilisations to claim one-time compensation of approx. 11.700 EUR (300.000 CZK). The Act relates to all victims of illegal sterilisations, who include, for example, people with disabilities.

Unlawfully conducted sterilisations became known in connection with cases of mainly Roma women on whom this procedure was conducted after childbirth or caesarean section without their proper, informed consent. In 2003, they turned to the Ombudsman through NGOs. Two years later, the Ombudsman Otakar Motejl stated that most cases of sterilisation he had investigated were illegal. Subsequently, in 2009, the women received an apology from then Prime Minister Jan Fischer and the Minister for Human Rights Michael Kocáb.

"The adoption of the Act is a great satisfaction for me. It is the only thing the State could do for the victims as it cannot repair the damage done to their psyche and family life. I advocated for compensation for victims already ten years ago as the Government Commissioner for Human Rights. Involuntary sterilizations were one of the worst violations of human integrity that our State committed in the past,” notes Monika Šimůnková, the Deputy Ombudsman, in relation to the adoption of the Act.

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