23 Oct UFI Stands up for Life at Pro-Choice Conference
UFI Stands up for Life at Pro-Choice Conference
October 23, 2007
Dear Friend of the Family,
As you have seen on our website the past few days, UFI Executive Director Laura Knaperek has been in London working with a coalition of pro-family/pro-life organizations in monitoring the “Women Deliver” conference. This conference was tasked with addressing the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goal 5 – reducing maternal mortality and morbidity.
Sponsored by a group of pro-choice organizations and groups sympathetic to them, the conference placed a heavy emphasis on abortion and overcoming opposition to abortion. Abortion providers Marie Stopes International and Planned Parenthood International, both among the organizations sponsoring the conference, stand to gain financially from promoting abortion.
Because of your ongoing generous support, not only did our team monitor the conference and report to the world on what was going on there, but when the meetings ended, the coalition took the bold step of presenting its evaluation of the conference to the organizers.
This conference provided UFI with the opportunity to strengthen ties with like-minded colleagues from around the world in support of family and the sanctity of human life. But, more importantly being there allowed us to learn how to combat the opposition’s positions and political strategies – keeping us one step ahead of our opponents.
In order for UFI to continue its integral work for families around the world and continue to bring you breaking news, we need your help in making it happen. $10, $25, $50, $100, $250, $500, $1,000 or whatever you can afford will go a long way in keeping us in the fight for families. To help us, please go to our contribute page and make your donation.
Laura gives us the coalition synopsis below. Thank you for reading. And, thank you for consideration of a contribution.
President United Families International
Letter to the Organizing Committee of the Conference “Women Deliver”
London, 20 October 2007
Jill Sheffield, President, Family Care International and the Organizing Committee
CC: Dr. Asha-Rose Migiro, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations and Conference Honorary Co-Chair
CC: Hon. Mary Robinson, President of Realizing Rights and Conference Honorary Co-Chair
WE, THE UNDERSIGNED ORGANIZATIONS, wish to express our profound disappointment and dismay that the Women Deliver conference has failed to meet its stated objective of addressing Millennium Development Goal 5, which is to reduce maternal mortality and morbidity.
Delegates were invited to attend a global conference on the causes, prevention and treatment of the complications of pregnancy and childbirth which lead to the deaths of so many mothers, particularly in developing countries, and to consider effective solutions.
Regrettably, the conference agenda was so preoccupied with promoting the ideology and practice of abortion that the genuine healthcare needs of women and children were virtually ignored in the plenary sessions and overwhelmed in the panel discussions.
Numerous UN reports, such as The World’s Women 2005: Progress in Statistics, have concluded that accurate data about maternal mortality, including abortion, are not available, especially for the developing world. Therefore, the presentation of unsubstantiated and unreliable data on illegal abortion as fact can only be seen as a deliberate attempt to mislead the conferees and the international community.
To assert that “unsafe abortions” are only those that are illegal, and to subsequently imply that legal abortion is therefore safe, is both disingenuous and scientifically flawed. The fact that the World Health Organization (WHO) will not be collecting information on the morbidity and mortality related to legal abortion is unconscionable if there is truly a commitment to accurate and meaningful data collection on morbidity and mortality statistics.
The consistent assertions that improvements in the maternal mortality rate are dependent on the promotion of legal abortion not only diverts attention from the urgent need for basic heath care, skilled birth attendants and emergency obstetrics, it threatens to undermine the field of obstetrics and gynecology if implemented on a wide scale.
Furthermore, we oppose the fact that:
– Members of the organizing committee, including the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) and Marie Stopes International, who have financial interests in the provision of abortion, have used the conference to promote a private agenda to spread abortion throughout the developing world;
– The organizing committee has attempted to manufacture a false consensus by ensuring that only the views which reinforced its pre-conceived ideas were represented during the conference;
– The conference has sidelined the main issues related to maternal mortality (basic health conditions based on vaccine availability, clean water, sanitation, basic nutritional supplementation, primary medical post-natal and peri-natal care, fistula, female genital mutilation, hemorrhage, sepsis, obstructed labor, eclampsia). Such sidelining is a serious act of negligence which leads not only to continuing, but increasing, the risks associated with maternal health.
We call upon the conference partners to focus on basic health care, skilled attendants and emergency obstetrics, which have been the key to decreasing maternal mortality in the developed world, instead of exploiting the tragedy of maternal mortality to promote abortion rights.
• Instituto De Política Familiar (IPF), ECOSOC consultative status with the UN
• Concerned Women for America (CWA), ECOSOC consultative status with the UN
• MaterCare International (MCI), ECOSOC consultative status with the UN
• World Federation of Catholic Medical Associations (FIAMC), ECOSOC consultative status with the UN
• United Families International (UFI), ECOSOC consultative status with the UN
• Society For the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC), ECOSOC consultative status with the UN
• World Union of Catholic Women’s Organisations (WUCWO), ECOSOC consultative status with the UN
• Federación Española de Asociaciones Provida, ECOSOC consultative status with the UN
• Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute (C-FAM)
• American Association of Prolife Obstetricians and Gynecologists (AAPLOG)
• Instituto Mujer y Vida, Spain
• Comité Nacional Provida de México, A.C.
• Salud Sexual y Reproductiva De México, A.C.
• Asociación Mexicana “Cultura de la Vida”
To read the memo is French or Spanish, click here.
Please go to the UFI home page to read articles and press releases related to the “Women Deliver” conference, and watch the UFI website for additional reports in the days to come. Thank you.
Laura Knaperek, UFI’s Executive Director