For the fourth year in a row, the Bush Administration has withheld delivering $34 million in Congressionally approved funding for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), based on false allegations that the UNFPA participates in coercive abortion and involuntary sterilization in China. This funding would have been used to prevent as many as 2 million unwanted pregnancies and 4,700 maternal deaths in developing countries. Moreover, the cutoff reduces urgently needed funds to treat women suffering from obstetric fistula or other illnesses from childbirth in the developing nations.
“This decision is disheartening because it contradicts clear evidence that UNFPA works hard to end coercion by proving the efficacy and superiority of the voluntary approach to family planning over any other alternative,” said Thoraya Obaid, UNFPA’s Executive Director.
When Bush first began withholding funds in 2002, activists Jane Roberts and Lois Abraham formed 34 Million Friends for UNFPA to try to replace some of the lost funds (now totaling $136 million). To date they have raised more than $2.7 million. For more information or to donate to the cause, visit www.34millionfriends.org.
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. . . .