A platform for voices supporting women's rights
The gynecological exam is carried out to evaluate whether a woman has had sexual intercourse or not and is practiced by some minority groups in the Quebec area. The College des Medicins has stated that in its most recent publication of its guidelines, it made clear that virginity testing was not permissible, as it goes against the college’s code of ethics. The cases in question came to light following research on virginity testing conducted by The University of Montreal.
Dr. Charles Bernard, CEO of College Des Medecins, said physicians still have a responsibility to evaluate if there is “any problem” that prompted the request, and whether there is a possibility the patient is in danger of being harmed. The CEO has also stated that physicians who provide “virginity certificates” will risk disciplinary action. However, the Council for the Status of Women stated that despite there being four reported cases, there is not enough evidence to suggest virginity testing is trend at this stage.
The demand for this kind of medical exam does appear to be low, Shaheen Ashraf, from the Canadian Council of Muslim Women said that the practice is “archaic”. She went on to say “We should be able to control our own bodies…no one else should have the right to even think (along) those lines.”