By Rebecca Oas, Ph.D and Lisa Correnti
Center for Family and Human Rights
WASHINGTON, D.C., August 26 (C-Fam) World Leaders and the U.S. Congress claim to be united about at least one thing: ending preventable deaths in childbirth and infancy by 2030. But while pending U.S. legislation enjoys bipartisan support and avoids mention of the hot button issues of abortion or contraception, it would divert grants away from real maternal health programs, including faith-based, and funnel them to groups endorsing abortion.
The Reach Every Mother And Child (REACH) Act introduced in the Senate by Senator Susan Collins now with 25 co-sponsors falls short in prioritizing evidence-based interventions that prevent and treat the causes of maternal and child mortality. The REACH Act guidelines are based on an existing USAID initiative, “Acting on the Call,” which relies on implementing organizations mostly known for their population control and abortion practices.
This includes groups like Population Services International (PSI) that distributes millions of medical abortion packages overseas and PATH which developed a self-inject version of the harmful injectable contraceptive Depo Provera. Other partnering organizations include the global family planning initiative “FP2020” which prioritizes funding for Depo, and “FHI360” known for scaling up delivery of Depo through community health workers in developing countries, and Population Action International which lobbies against the Mexico City Policy, an executive order that prohibits US funding to groups that perform or promote abortion.
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