Women sterilised without their consent will be offered compensation in the Czech Republic after President Miloš Zeman signed a bill into law in the first week of August. The women will be awarded 300,000 Czech crowns (£10,000) as compensation from the government.
Social workers used threats and incentives to force women to go through the procedure from 1966 to 2012. The exact number of women affected is unknown, but campaigners believe there were several hundred victims. The Czech Health Ministry will administer the compensation claims; however, it has yet to confirm when the procedure will commence. Victims who can demonstrate that they received benefits during the pre-1990 era for undergoing the procedure will be eligible for compensation. Those sterilised after 1990 will be asked to describe the incident and support their claims as best they can.
For Elena Gorolová, 51, a social worker from Ostrava who was sterilised at 21, the move marks a historic win. Gwendolyn Albert, a human rights activist who was one of those campaigning for the change, said: “This means the wrongdoing committed against all who have been sterilised without their informed
consent is acknowledged and can be redressed.”