Using “Family Planning” in the 2030 Agenda to promote a “right to a child” for the LGBTI community.

By Marianna Orlandi, Ph.D. | July 13, 2017

An NGO that promotes the rights of people who identify as lesbian, gay, homosexual, transsexuals and intersex, argues UN Member States must “provide viable options to assisted reproductive technologies for LGBTI people with parenting intentions.”

In their words, “family planning” money should be used to help single non-heterosexual individuals create their own family, unavoidably depriving children of their natural mother and father. The recommendation came up this week, during a side event co-organized by LGBTI advocates, and International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) at UN Headquarters. It is part of a broader report, later presented at a similar event, co-sponsored by Argentina.

IPPF has long been criticized for using “family planning,” and “sexual and reproductive health” language for a worldwide promotion of abortion. LGBTI advocates are now recurring to the same language to promote their access to artificial reproductive techniques—too expensive for them, at the moment, wherever allowed.

The obvious legal problem is, “what about the rights of the child?”. What about the child’s right “to know and to be cared for by their mother and father?” Is such an option in his/her “best interest?” Furthermore, access to “family planning” was always linked to the internationally agreed definition of the family, never to satisfy individual desires.

This event is one among a series of panels organized at the UN Headquarters along the official schedule of the High Level Political Forum, a venue where Member States voluntarily report on their progress in implementing the SDGs, as they were agreed in Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development.

According to the speakers, the obligation of Member States to provide access to assisted reproduction to non-heterosexual individuals derives directly from Agenda 2030. It derives, they hold, from Member States’ obligation to provide access to “sexual and reproductive health,” as enshrined in Sustainable Development Goals 3 and 5, “without discrimination,” to “all.”

The panelists acknowledged the SDGs do not “explicitly” mention these issues. Nonetheless, they hold their interpretations legitimate, grounded in the “authoritative words” of former UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, and of the contested Independent Expert on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity.

Half of the UN Member States openly rejected and still reject the idea human rights should be grounded on individuals’ sexualities.

According to its title, the side-event focused on “tackling” “sexual and reproductive coercion.” What the panelists argued, however, goes beyond any international agreement on “sexual and reproductive health.”

IPPF’s Senior International Advocacy Officer stressed the need to provide access to abortion “to eradicate poverty.” She claimed, “sexual and reproductive health and rights” are crucial to this end: “If women do not have to spend their lives raising children,” she said, “they are more likely to get an education, to be economically independent, and to be a productive element in their community.”

Apparently, mothers are not productive elements of society, according to IPPF.

She recurred to another famous argument abortion advocates use to promote their agenda. “Rich women get abortions, poor ones die.”

If “family planning” investments increase, while maternal health remains forgotten, there is no assurance poor women will be better off. Quite certainly, their aborted/averted children will not.

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