All Our Lives belongs to the Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition, which addresses the shortage of family planning items among the global poor who want them. Already 200 million women worldwide want contraception but cannot access it. Is the US going to doom even more women to unintended pregnancies, abortions, and unsupported parenthood?

US Republicans are seeking to drastically cut US funding of UNFPA, the world’s largest family planning and reproductive health agency.

The proposed cut cannot be about abortion or coerced contraception. By law, US money cannot fund such practices. These two things also violate the mission of UNFPA.

So what is this cut about? All Our Lives has to wonder. Especially because UNFPA has played an important role in developing and distributing CycleBeads, a kind of natural family planning acceptable to people with religious objections to “artificial” methods.

Voluntary family planning is a basic human right. Why, once again, are US politicians trying to take it away-especially politicians who intone “prolife” but undermine everything necessary to prevent abortions?

For World AIDS Day 2010, UNFPA reports the good news that new HIV infections have dropped 20 per cent over the last decade, thanks to effective prevention programs, which include condoms and education about safer sex. Deaths from the virus are also dropping.

These are just some of the reasons why All Our Lives belongs to the Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition. Everyone who wants and needs condoms and safer sex education should be able to access them and have the social power to protect themselves, their sexual partners, and any children they might conceive from HIV/AIDS.

All Our Lives also supports the expansion of antiretroviral treatments, to everyone who needs them, at any stage of life, born or unborn. Where available these treatments have transformed lives and made them possible.

While welcoming the good news from UNFPA, I also ponder the overwhelming amount of progress that is yet to be made on the global HIV/AIDS pandemic. I remain haunted by something I bore witness to on World AIDS Day 1999, the unveling of the AIDS Quilt in Cape Town, South Africa.

How many new infections and deaths still have happened since that event? Why are they still happening, when we have evidence-based knowledge of how to prevent them?

Please do something. You can donate to South Africa's Treatment Action Campaign, a world leader in defending the rights of HIV/AIDS-affected people. You can donate a Mother-Baby Pack to UNICEF USA, empowering a woman to protect her child from HIV before and after birth.

The UNFPA blog Conversations for a Better World has announced the winner in its contest for best idea on contraceptive access for the 200 million plus women worldwide who want but lack it.

It's us!

Our proposal will be featured for a month on the website of Women Deliver, the just-concluded global conference on reducing maternal deaths.

Winning Idea: Access to Contraception Begins with Questions on the Ground

Please spread the news. It's not every day that the pro every life, pro nonviolent choice approach gets a hearing!

How best to serve the 200 million plus women worldwide who want but lack access to family planning? The UNFPA-sponsored blog Conversations for a Better World is running a contest for the best idea. Please vote for All Our Lives' entry! The winning idea will be presented at the upcoming Women Deliver conference for action against maternal mortality.

 

Access to contraception begins with questions on the ground

Via UNFPA's Conversations for a Better World: In Nebraska, prolifers and prochoicers are demanding truly universal prenatal care. It includes undocumented immgrants. May this be the wave of the future.

At Conversations for a Better World, a multivoiced blog sponsored by UNFPA, an All Our Lives cofounder defends guaranteed maternity care as a universal human right: It Affects Us All: Maternal Healthcare