As family planning advocates, I think we need to remember that family planning is the means to an end, not an end goal in itself. Access to information and services is critical, but increasing the use of contraception starts and ends with supporting the broader goals and rights of women.
The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals lifted an injuction barring the state from defunding local Planned Parenthood clinics and their affiliates while a trial challening that funding ban moves forward.
In the face of major backlash, the school has decided to reverse its discriminatory policy.
Dehli Charter school has a radical stance for teens they think might be pregnant — get tested or go home.
This unprecedented effort to fund family planning worldwide could be a major milestone in global health, development and women’s rights. But we need to make sure this new funding and political commitment is followed by swift action—and change felt on the ground.
We need to recognise that this Family Planning Summit is just a first step, and that it is crucial that we use the energy of the summit to drive us forward. We have to maintain momentum, and we have to do that by moving fast.
The answer is not to promote contraception in order to reduce unsafe abortion, as the FP Summit did. The answer is to promote contraception to reduce unwanted pregnancy and provide safe abortion to every woman who finds herself with an unwanted pregnancy.
For those of us trying to discern whether the rights of women will truly be at the center of this Family Planning Initiative, as promised by DFID and the Gates Foundation in response to our months of advocacy, there were moments of disquiet.
It’s time to set aside politics and recommit ourselves – as a city, a state and a nation – to family planning and sexual health. As recently as the 1980s, these were civic ideals that united us. If the global community can revive them in 2012, so can we.