House Committee Reverses July 10 Release of UNFPA Funds
One week after approving the Lowey-Kolbe amendment which set a July 10 deadline for the release of $34 million to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), the US House Appropriations Committee narrowly reversed its vote 32-30 passing an amendment by Representative Todd Tiahrt (R-KS) to drop the July 10 deadline and cap the UNFPA Fiscal Year (FY) 2002 funding at $34 million. Setting instead a July 31, 2002 deadline for President Bush’s determination of UNFPA’s alleged role—unsubstantiated to date—in forced abortions in China, the Tiahrt amendment according to the Wall Street Journal, dangerously grants the President "substantial discretion" over the funds, irrespective of the State Department’s investigative report expected in June.
Opponents criticized that the delay of UNFPA funds has already caused the agency to make cut backs in programs and personnel. According to UNFPA spokesperson Stirling Scruggs, the US hold "could mean 2 million unwanted pregnancies, 800,000 induced abortions, 4,700 maternal deaths, and 77,000 infant and child deaths." Echoing earlier statements by UNFPA denying that it funds any programs that perform forced procedures or uses any US funds for its programs in China, Alan Guttmacher Institute government affairs director Susan Cohen stated, "This is about an agency that has nothing to do with abortion, that has nothing to do with coercion."
1/23/2015 #HeForShe Campaign Launches Pilot Effort Aimed at Institutional Equality - The United Nations' gender equality campaign #HeForShe has launched a new program called IMPACT 10X10X10.
United Nations Goodwill Ambassador Emma Watson, together with UN Women Executive DirectorPhumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, introduced the one-year pilot effort aimed at encouraging corporations, universities, and governments to play an active role in enhancing women's empowerment and equality in Davos, Switzerland today at the World Economic Forum.
"Women need to be equal participants in our homes, societies, in our governments, and in our workplaces," Watson said.
First introduced in September, HeForShe is a solidarity movement that calls on men and boys to confront gender inequalities that face women and girls globally. . . .
1/22/2015 BREAKING: House to Vote on Abortion Coverage Ban - After they were forced to scrap plans for a 20-week abortion ban, House Republican leaders decided late last night to instead ram through a vote today on a different extreme anti-abortion bill.
House Republicans are now pushing HR 7, a bill promoted as a ban on federal funding of abortion that would actually prevent women from using their own money to purchase health insurance that includes abortion care. . . .
1/22/2015 House Cancels Abortion Ban After GOP Congresswomen Drop Support - House Republicans cancelled plans to vote on a 20-week ban on abortion after Republican Congresswomen removed their names publicly as co-sponsors of the bill.
The vote on the unconstitutional 20-week ban had originally been scheduled for today, the anniversary of Roe v. . . .