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Why is contraception controversial?

Posted by Tom Megginson | 4-09-2012 20:21 | Category: Women's Issues


The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has launched a global campaign to make family planning education and contraception more available to all girls and women. Called “There is No Controversy in Contraception,” the collaborative project asks visitors to educate themselves, share their stories, and spread the word about how essential women’s reproductive choice is to human rights and everyone’s quality of life.

From the campaign site:

Why the Urgency?

Today, more than 200 million women in developing countries who don’t want to get pregnant lack access to contraceptives. This is a life and death crisis. Complications in pregnancy and childbirth are a leading cause of death for women in Africa.

Why Contraceptives?

Contraceptives save lives. Giving women and girls access to contraceptives is transformational – families become healthier, wealthier, and better educated.

Reducing unintended pregnancies leads to fewer girls dropping out of school and greater opportunity to escape poverty. Contraceptives are one of the best investments a country can make in its future.

Contraceptives are cost-effective and deliver big savings in healthcare costs. Each dollar spent on family planning can save governments up to 6 dollars on health, housing, water, and other public services.

The campaign also invites people to take a pledge — “I believe every girl and woman deserves the opportunity to determine her future” — and share that commitment with friends.

It is unlikely that a campaign like this will change the religious and social policies that keep so many women burdened with unwanted motherhood from a young age, and cause overpopulation. But as the current political climate in the United States shows us, reproductive choice is far from just being a third world issue. While this campaign is “preaching to the choir”, at least it might help form solidarity and give women and those who love them more determination to make change.

See the campaign video after the break.

There Is No Controversy in Contraceptives
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

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