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Money for Nothing: PRI Report Shows Funding the Family Planners Hurts Women

The population controllers at Planned Parenthood and the U.N. Population Fund are moving aggressively to grab as much money as they can from an already strapped U.S. taxpayer. International family planners are slated to receive $545 million, while the UNFPA is in line for a TESC million handout. This is “money for nothing,” PRI says in a new report, funding that will only harm women and further degrade legitimate health care.

Proponents of “reproductive health care” assert that the 1994 population conference in Cairo marked a watershed between two radically different approaches to reducing the fertility of women in the developing world. They concede that, prior to Cairo, population control programs were driven solely by a narrow demographic imperative.

Following Cairo, however, they maintain that a broad approach to improving “’reproductive health” was adopted that not only encouraged smaller families, but also did so in the context of providing “client-centered” programs that conferred significant health and welfare benefits to their target population. They also claim that the rhetorical shift to “reproductive health” has led to reductions in maternal mortality, infant mortality, and the absolute number of abortions.

These several claims are misleading, if not altogether false. The following report documents how:

  • The careless administration of anti-fertility drugs and devices in the developing world has done grave harm to women’s health.

  • “Reproductive health care” is not health care.

  • Population control cum reproductive health programs has failed to address women’s real health needs, as they themselves perceive them.

  • The arguments used to support an exclusive focus on contraception and sterilization (“latent demand,” and “unmet need”) are little more than rationalizations used to justify a near exclusive focus on fertility reduction at the expense of primary health care.

  • Family Planning clinics make a pretense of offering primary health care services time they are subjected to pressure to accept “reproductive health “services.”

  • “Reproductive health” programs, despite claims to the contrary, have arguably led to increases in maternal mortality, infant mortality, and the absolute number of abortions.

This report concludes that the health needs of women in the developing world could be better met by redirecting existing resources to primary health care, including obstetric care.

“… [A] poor and exploited woman who is sterilized is still poor and exploited. But with our ideological blinders, all we see as the source of such a woman’s problems is her fertility. It is but a short step, even in the name of compassion, to the coerced or forced administration of birth control. If a woman’s problems are caused by her fertility, and if she refuses to acknowledge this reality, it is for her own good, so the reasoning [of the population controllers] goes, to persuade, or demand, or force her to stop having children.”

—Angela Franks, Margaret Sanger’s Eugenic Legacy

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