March 10, 2009
U.N. Delegates Leave Family Out of CSW Documents
United Families International is at the United Nations this week. This is the second week of the 53rd Commission on the Status of Women. Men and women from all over the world have gathered here to debate the issues they feel are most crucial to women. The focus of this conference is “The equal sharing of responsibilities between women and men, including care-giving in the context of HIV/AIDS”. There is a lot of discussion about men and boys sharing in responsibilities that are primarily done by women.
Despite this focus, what do you think are the most hotly contested topics here? The topics that are receiving the most attention are: reproductive rights (abortion), any mention of the traditional family, and ratification of the CEDAW and CRC treaties. We discussed the CRC treaty in last week’s email and CEDAW is covered here.
Regardless of what the focus of CSW is each year, the opposition uses the topic to promote abortion, the destruction of the family, homosexual rights, and many other radical feminist ideas. There are hundreds of people here who are working feverishly to convince the world that these ideas are the enlightened, progressive way for countries to govern. They have employed hundreds of men and women to come to the Commission to see if this time they can be successful in defeating the pro-family groups and guarantee abortion on demand and the legalization of prostitution.
Fortunately, there are a handful of countries who still believe that the family is the fundamental unit of society and that life should be protected from the time of conception. We also have a small coalition of pro-family organizations who work together to educate those countries on the attempts of the other side to insert language that deceptively attempts to force countries to adopt their ideology.
We are grateful for those countries which are willing to stand side-by-side with the pro-family coalition and are willing to defy the strong-arm attempts of the European Union and the U.S. We also appriciate our partners in the coalition – Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute, Concerned Women of America, the Right to Life organizations, Family Watch, REAL Women of Canada, and others.
Won’t you join us? Please consider making a donation today to help us defray the costs of these two weeks at the United Nations. We are few in number but we are able to achieve significant results because we are here. With your help we will be able to continue to make a difference here for all of you around the world. A donation of $25, $35, $50 or $100 goes along ways to helping us.
Check out our website and follow our blog. You will find regular updates of our successes here. This week there will be a lot of negotiating and tense moments as we support and educate the delegates so they are able to withstand the opposition. We look forward to sharing those moments with all of you.
United Families International
Commission on the Status of Women Forgets About Families
“The Family is the Natural and Fundamental Group Unit of Society and is Entitled to Protection by Society and the State.”
– Universal Declaration on Human Rights 16-3
Since its inception, the United Nations has recognized the importance of the family and its impact on society. So much so that 60 years ago, member states overwhelmingly declared that the family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society, and noted that the family is entitled to special protection from society and governments. From that time – 1948, until today, over 200 references on the family have been inserted into UN treaties and important documents.
Today, reporting from the Commission of the Status of Women, 53rd session, something is missing. There is not one reference to the family in the draft outcome document or any of the resolutions.
The Beijing Plan of Action, hailed as one of the most important UN documents on the rights of women, prioritizes the importance of the family and calls upon member states to:
- “Help the family…in its supporting, education and nurturing roles.”
– Beijing 285(a)
- “Analyze policies and programs to assess their impact on family well-being.”
– Beijing 58(b)
- “Design and implement and promote family friendly policies and services.”
– Beijing +5 82(d)
Recognizing the importance of the family is a no-brainer. There are mounds of social science research supporting the fact that intact families fare better in the areas of finances, health, education, and welfare. Even those opposed to our positions on the family and life tend to recognize that the family is a “positive place to bring opportunities to children”.
The Doha Institute on Family Policy held a CSW side event on Thursday, March 5th where they invited the UN Special Repertoire on Violence Against Women, Yahin Erturk of Turkey, to address the crowd. United Families International does not consider Yahin Erturk and her UN colleagues to be true friends of the family. Even so, listening to her point of view was interesting and helpful in knowing the opposition’s mindset.
She referred to the importance of the family and reiterated that the only way to protect women and children from violence in the home was for the last 8 holdouts of CEDAW ratification (with emphasis on the USA) to get on board and help create an international legal framework that will move women’s rights forward.
When asked about the CEDAW Committee’s unsavory concluding comments and general recommendations to member states under review, Ms. Erturk side-stepped the issue. She may not recognize the misguided overreaching by the CEDAW Committee, but we certainly do and encourage you to fight to keep the US from ratifying this destructive treaty.
Some of the CEDAW Committee’s former comments and recommendations include:
DOT.jpg Legalizing Prostitution – (The Republic of Korea (2007), Kenya (2007), Netherlands (2007), Fiji (2002, Hungary (2002), Uganda (2002), Siant Kitts and Nevis (2002)
DOT.jpg Legalize and Promote Abortion – (African nations (17). Latin America (20), Caribbean (4), Asian (13), European (4), Middle Eastern (4)
DOT.jpg Promoting Homosexuality – Brazil (2007), Honduras (2007), Republic of Korea (2007), Sweden (2001), Kyrgyzstan (1999), Mexico (1998)
The current draft Agreed Conclusions – the CSW Outcome Document includes language in paragraph 6. b. that endorses the CEDAW Committee’s concluding Comments and General Recommendations.
United Families is at the United Nations right now fighting to get that language out of the Outcome Document as well as other anti-family, anti-life proposed language. You can help us by donating $25, $35, $50 or $100 and following what is happening here on our UN Blog.
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