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C-FAM Charges Against UNICEF
September 16, 2003
by Austin Ruse

Dear Colleague,

Last week a woman named Barbara Crossette, recent UN correspondent for the New York Times, wrote a column for the UN Wire and for The Atlantic Online attacking C-FAM's report on UNICEF, saying that our UNICEF critique was "dangerous." Funny thing, though, she did not challenge or refute any of our actual charges. Moreover, she cited an article from the presitigious British medical journal, The Lancet, that turns out to confirm much of what we charged in our recently published investigation of UNICEF.

We are told our report is the topic of heated debate at UNICEF headquarters in New York City. I urge all people of goodwill from all over the world to join together and get UNICEF out of the business of promoting abortion, contraception, and graphic sex ed.

Spread the word.

Yours sincerely,
Austin Ruse

Action item: Start a campaign now, wherever you are in the world, to get UNICEF out of the business of promoting abortion, contraception, and brutal sex ed. Anyone can do it, especially organizational leaders.

September 12, 2003

Volume 6, Number 38

British Medical Journal Bolsters C-FAM Charges Against UNICEF

The allegation that UNICEF's embrace of radical feminism has detracted from its main child survival mission, a charge raised in C-FAM's investigative report, "UNICEF, Women or Children First?", has been bolstered by a recent series of articles published in the British medical journal, the Lancet. Most significantly, the authors of the Lancet articles appear to identify the decline in UNICEF with the change in senior leadership, when, in 1995, the near-universally respected executive director Jim Grant was succeeded by New York politician and activist Carol Bellamy at the behest of then-President Bill Clinton.

As executive director, Grant focused UNICEF's efforts on a few, proven healthcare interventions, such as massive immunization drives and oral rehydration for children suffering from diarrhea. Under Bellamy, UNICEF has expanded its issues base to include controversial programs like efforts to increase children's access to condoms, endorsing abortifacient "emergency contraceptives" for refugee women, and distributing graphic sexual education material to children in Roman Catholic countries in Latin America.

The authors of the Lancet articles, an organization of scientists called the Bellagio Study Group on Child Survival, claim that this turn away from Grant's strategy has undermined child survival efforts. The group writes, "Although the child survival revolution of the 1980s greatly reduced child mortality, the tasks of preventing child deaths and addressing inequities remain unfinished. The late Jim Grant, then executive director of UNICEF, launched the Child Survival Revolution in 1982... Many countries made substantial progress in reducing child mortality... Since the mid-1990s, however, this momentum has been lost, and gains in child survival have slowed or been reversed."

The authors emphasize that such changes cost children's lives, "The child survival revolution of the 1980s contributed to steady decreases in child mortality in some populations, but much remains to be done. More than 10 million children will die this year, almost all of whom are poor. Two-thirds of these deaths could have been prevented if effective child survival interventions had reached all children and mothers who needed them."

The authors conclude with a plea for UNICEF to return to Grant's approach, "Child survival must be put back on the agenda so that this knowledge can be translated into action, quickly... Strong and unified leadership was the hallmark of the child survival revolution of the 1980s, and must be re-established at international, national and subnational levels... We, a group of concerned scientists and public health managers, call on...UNICEF... and their other UN partners to act on behalf of children by putting child survival at the top of their list of priorities."

The Friday Fax has been told that the C-FAM UNICEF report is a topic of urgent conversation and ongoing crisis management at UNICEF. An ambassador from an influential UN delegation also told the Friday Fax that the UNICEF report is what he hears about "wherever he goes." Next week, UNICEF holds its Executive Board meeting, at which nations will be free to question UNICEF's actions and priorities. It is expected that UNICEF will be asked to answer the charges made by both C-FAM and the Lancet.

Copyright -- C-FAM (Catholic Family & Human Rights Institute).
Permission granted for unlimited use. Credit required.

Catholic Family & Human Rights Institute
866 United Nations Plaza, Suite 427
New York, New York 10017
Phone: (212) 754-5948 Fax: (212) 754-9291
E-mail: c-fam@c-fam.org Website: www.c-fam.org

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