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Jimena Villar de Onis


The right to health is included in the following sections and articles of the Constitution of Argentina:

  1. Section 23 provides for equal opportunities and treatment, and the full benefit and exercise of the rights recognized by the Constitution of Argentina and by international treaties on human rights in force for all, especially for children, women, the aged and disabled people.
  2. Section 41 provides for “the right to a healthy and balanced environment fit for human development in order that productive activities shall meet present needs without endangering those of future generations; and shall have the duty to preserve it.”

Sexual and reproductive rights implementation


Under Article 85 of the Penal Code of the Nation of Argentina abortion is illegal and punitive between 1 to 10 years of jail depending on the situation.

Article 86 allows for two exceptions, namely the abortion being executed with the aim of avoiding a danger towards the life or health of the woman if the danger cannot be avoided by any other measures and if the pregnancy was due to rape or sexual relations with a woman mentally incompetent to consent to a sexual relationship.

Article 88 establishes a prison term of one to four years for women who complete  their own abortion.

Violence against women

Article 80 of the Penal Code of the Nation of Argentina sets prison for life for anyone who murders, amongst others, a husband/wife, an ex-husband/wife or anyone with whom a relationship has been or is being maintained.

The Law for the Integral Protection of Women (Law 26.485) works towards preventing, sanctioning and eradicating violence against women within their personal relations.

Article 3 grants women and children freedom from violence and discrimination.  Additionally it grants the rights of equal access to health and education, equality between men and women, freedom of expression and thought, and physical, emotional, sexual and economical integrity, amongst many others. More specifically, article 3(k) demands respectful treatment of women and a treatment that is free of violence.

Human trafficking

The Law for the Prevention and Sanctions Against Human Trafficking and Assistance for its Victims (Law 26.364) makes human trafficking illegal and defines it for any person under the age of 18 as the offer, capture, transportation and accommodation of any person with the aim of exploitation. For any person over the age of 18 it is defined as the offer, capture, transportation and accommodation of any person with the aim of exploitation and using fraud, violence, threats or any other mean of intimidation or coercion, abuse of authority or of a situation of vulnerability to obtain the consent of a person.

Article 6 grants rights to all victims of human trafficking.

Rights of sexual minorities

The Law on Civil Marriage (Law 26.618) grants for same-sex couples all the rights and responsibilities of marriage, including the right to adopt children.

At present, no national law exists to expressly deal with discrimination or harassment on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity, although the City of Buenos Aires and Rosario do include sexual orientation in their civil rights laws.

Within the military, the law allows for gays and lesbians to serve in the military and bans discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation within the armed forces.

Rights of transgender people

The Law of Gender Identity (Law 26.743) allows for transsexual people to be legally identified with their name and sex of choice. The Law also orders for all medical treatment aimed at the expression of gender identity to be included in the Obligatory Medical Plan, which guarantees coverture in all health systems, both public and private.

Sexual and reproductive rights challenges

Despite its very religious background, Argentina has managed to vastly improve the sexual and reproductive rights of people. However, it is still encountering many challenges with the sexual and reproductive rights of every citizen. The right to an abortion is still very strictly limited by the law and by the courts. People living in rural communities find it hard to access public health resources. Additionally, domestic violence is a serious problem in Argentina despite having passed laws aiming towards the protection of women in domestic settings.