U.S. “disassociates itself” from WHO Reproductive Health Strategy

U.S. “disassociates itself” from WHO Reproductive Health Strategy

After such invited speakers as former presidents and Nobel Peace Prize winners Kim Dae-jung of South Korea, and Jimmy Carter of the United States, who both spoke about the challenges presented by the growing gap between the world’s rich and poor, the World Health Organization’s first global strategy on reproductive health was adopted by the 57th World Health Assembly (I assume you will realize that reproductive health also includes dealing with the reality of sexually transmittted diseases).

The good ole USA was the sole rejecting voice, and announced that it had "disassociated itself."* The U.S. requested that its position of disassociation be reflected in the report of the WHA. The U.S. does not recognize the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), which the resolution included. They took issue with the term "sexual health rights," asserting this term has not been recognized as a human rights term anywhere and argued that the term "unsafe abortion" should not be used as it implies that other abortion is acceptable. In addition, the US denied the validity of the WHO statistics on the risks of unsafe sex.

Jill Sheffield, Family Care International:
"While the U.S. government used to be a champion of support for family planning, safe motherhood programs and girls’ education, it is now an impediment to progress. The Bush Administration is ignoring the reality that strengthening the health and well-being of families in poor countries will make the world a better, safer place for us all."

"Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA):
"Once again, the Bush Administration has shown their true colors by calling for a reproductive health policy that is more about ideology than reality. We have a moral responsibility to ensure the health and well-being of women and men around the world."

The stats from the article state that each year, some eight million of the estimated 210 million women who become pregnant suffer life-threatening complications related to pregnancy, many experiencing long-term morbidities and disabilities. In 2000, an estimated 529 000 women died during pregnancy and childbirth from largely preventable causes, often related to poverty and lack of medical care.

The group was composed of representatives for 191 countries who got together to strategize for global reproductive health. Incidentally, Taiwan was rejected as a member of WHA for the 8th time.


*Disassociated itself???? This is Jehovah’s Witness terminology!!!!!


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