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Cambridge, Massachusetts, Harvard Institute for International Development, 1990 Jun. , 52 p. (Development Discussion Paper No. 344)Ideology of population control has fueled population research and fertility control programs. This ideology comprises the prochoice and prolife positions; the Roman Catholic doctrine on responsible parenthood and contraception; and fertility control professed by Marxists and environmentalists. The predominant ideology of demographic research and family planning (FP) from the 1950s to 1974 is examined. The solution of population was to be by voluntary action as demonstrated by knowledge-attitude-practice (KAP) surveys sponsored by the Population Council that was founded at the behest of John D. Rockefeller III in 1952. The Council also supported technical assistance and vigorously promoted (FP). The Ford Foundation developed a population control program in 1958, funding research with over $181 million during the period. In 1967 the Agency for International Development (USAID) joined population donors, and became the largest financier of FP programs that produced a decline of fertility from 6.1 children/woman to 4.5 in 28 countries. At the World Population Conference in 1974 held in Bucharest the claim of population growth inhibiting development was challenged, and the development of socioeconomic and health care conditions was advocated. The Project on Cultural Values and Population Policy was an 8-nation study on cultural values in FP program implementation whose utility was questioned by UNFPA staff. The World Development Report 1984 by the World Bank was influential and reiterated the danger of population growth checking economic development, although critics charged biases and distortions. The Lapham-Mauldin Scale devised for the evaluation of FP program success is replete with value judgments. FP program implementation difficulties and shortcomings are further examined in Latin America, China, India, and Indonesia.
Study cites unmet world demand for contraceptives..House panel votes to increase Pop Aid funding, rescind program restrictions.
WASHINGTON MEMO. 1991 May 20; (8):1-2.In addition to increasing overseas family planning aid, the House Foreign Affairs Committee has voted to reverse restrictive policies begun during the Reagan administration. This decision comes after the publication of a UNFPA annual report entitled "The State of World Population," which indicates that the world's population could double to 10.2 billion with 60 years. Despite the Bush administration's opposition to earmarking funds for specific programs within the Agency for International Development (AID), the committee allocated funds specifically for population programs. For population assistance, it reserved $300 million for 1992 and $350 for 1993, up from $250 million the previous year. The committee also made available $100 million for family planning under the Development Fund for Africa, doubling the amount from the previous year. Besides increased funding, the committee also voted to renew funding to UNFPA and to reverse the "Mexico City" policy. In 1985, the Reagan administration ended all aid to UNFPA because the organization contributed money to China's family planning program. The administration viewed this as condoning coercive abortion practices. The Mexico City policy, named after the host city of the 1984 International Conference on Population, banned any US aid to family planning organizations in developing countries which provided abortion-related services or information, even if these programs were being funded without US money. Although just beginning to prepare its reauthorization bill, the Foreign Relations Committee in the Senate also appears ready to increase its support of population activities, including the reversal of the 2 policies. But critics of UNFPA and defenders of the Mexico City policy have threatened with a presidential veto if the measures are eventually adopted.
Impact of the Mexico City policy on family planning programs and reproductive health care in developing countries.
[Unpublished] 1988. 6,  p.Field interviews in 10 developing countries concerning response to the U.S. Mexico City policy--no USAID support of programs that counsel or support abortion--suggest that the policy is counter-productive. Access to safe medical abortion has been curtailed and associated contraceptive services have suffered. In some places even treatment of septic abortion has ceased, while in others, the rate of septic abortion cases is escalating. There is no evidence that total numbers of abortions are declining, as is the stated intention of the policy. Public information about abortion has suppressed, and epidemiological and biomedical research on abortion and related contraceptive methods have been curtailed. Hospital and library files have been expunged, and in 1 country, thousands of medical textbooks have been destroyed. This self-censorship appears to err on the side of caution, because of fear that whole programs will be closed down. Family planning assistance has been cut to large 3rd world countries and to organizations known for providing high quality services. Some nationals voiced the opinion that the U.S. has lost face as a reliable world power, and that the U.S. policy might undermine the world consensus on family planning. The new restrictions have increased the cost of family planning programs by requiring certification of sub-grantees on their lack of abortion-related activities. In countries where abortion is illegal but is increasingly provided by semi-autonomous private agencies, the policy is impossible for grantees to monitor.
GOVERNANCE. HARVARD JOURNAL OF PUBLIC POLICY. 1987 Winter-Spring; 9-14.The future of international population assistance is threatened by the emergence of a New Right coalition composed of conservative Republicans, Protestant fundamentalists, elements of the Catholic Church, and other right-to-life advocates. This coalition has advanced 3 main arguments against population assistance: 1) rapid population growth in developing countries does not hinder social and economic development; 2) contributing to population assistance links the US with the promotion of abortion and threatens traditional family values; and 3) population assistance facilitates coercion in family planning programs in developing countries. As a result of the coalition's efforts, the US has suspended contributions to the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) and the United Nations Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA). In addition, the US Agency for International Development (AID) is under pressure to define the preferred content and clientele of its services in accordance with the views of the New Right. As the US Government reduces population assistance, it will lose opportunities to debate population issues with other donors. Moreover, in the absence of strong US support for multilateral programs, other donors may become uncertain about their commitments. Although the Reagan Administration is unlikely to change its position, advocates of a strong international population policy may be able to protect programs from further erosion. They can remind policy makers that reducing birth rates in developing countries will yield significant social benefits; they can support efforts to integrate family planning with other health and development programs. Finally, the resources of agencies such as IPPF and UNFPA can be augmented by support to affiliated agencies or specific projects.