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feminist wire | daily newsbriefs

March-17-08

United Nations Finds US Not Combating Racism Effectively

The United Nations (UN) Committee on Elimination of Racial Discrimination called attention to the wide racial disparities that continue to exist in the US. The Committee concluded March 7 after finding the US lacking in its pursuit of the end of racial discrimination. The Committee's report on the US criticized persistent racial profiling, the dismantling of affirmative action, inadequate access to health care, and the racial disparities in the US criminal justice system.

The UN also condemned the racial inequities in reproductive and sexual health care in the US. The Center for Reproductive Rights reports that that the Committee urged the US to reduce its high rates of maternal and infant mortality, to decrease the rate of unplanned pregnancies, and to stop the spread of HIV/AIDS. The Reproductive Health Reality Check pointed out that women of color have significantly worse sexual health than white women.

Nancy Northup, president of the Center for Reproductive Rights, said, "We applaud the Committee for addressing the unconscionable racial disparities in maternal deaths, unintended pregnancies, and HIV-AIDS. It's time for the U.S. to stop making excuses for racial inequalities and take responsibility for ensuring access to quality reproductive health care for all women in America."

The Center for Reproductive Rights reports that this is the first time the Committee has mentioned family planning in reviews of countries, emphasizing the problems in the US.

Media Resources: Committee on Elimination of Racial Discrimination 03/07/08; Center for Reproductive Rights 03/07/08; RH Reality Check 03/10/08


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