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Building community solidarities: Reproductive support for people with variations of sex characteristics

Dr Charlotte Jones (she/her)

Tuesday, 28 September 2021 at 11:00:00 pm UTC

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This short talk will begin to explore the reproductive concerns of people with variations in sex characteristics (VSCs) and the importance of VSC community engagement and collaboration in research. Despite the prevalence and significance of infertility and subfertility in the lives of many people with sex variations, their experiences are rarely acknowledged in fertility and reproductive literature (Jones 2016, 2019). Despite this, research indicates that infertility (both physical and structural), as well as reproductive decisions and barriers, are a primary concern for many people with VSCs (Jones 2016, 2019).

I will introduce the aims and initial findings of a recent project, Reprofutures (2019-2021), involving collaborative, co-designed research which brought together people with personal experiences of VSCs, support group facilitators, activists, and campaigners. Drawing on a range of expertise and experience, the research sought to recommend how reproductive psychosocial support could be re-imagined for people with VSCs in the UK, but also to explore how a collective emphasis on fertility and reproduction could build solidarities across disparate patient groups and activist communities with shared experiences of medical jurisdiction and institutionalised harms.

Charlotte Jones (she/her) is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Wellcome Centre for Cultures and Environments of Health, University of Exeter, UK. Her research addresses issues of gender, sexuality, disability, and health, and particularly the intersections of these areas. In 2016, she was awarded her PhD on the impact of VSC diagnoses on relationships, identities, and recognition in the UK. Since then, she has coordinated collaborative research focusing on VSCs, reproductive support, and relationships.

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