Melinda Gates vowed this week that she will not give up her goal to provide family planning access to 120 million women world-wide by 2020.
The Kansas City Star reports the Family Planning 2020 summit, which receives support from the Gates Foundation, is falling behind on its 2012 pledge to provide contraception to 120 million women in the next eight years.
“As of the halfway point in July 2016, we had reached 24 million additional women with family planning services,” Gates wrote in an op-ed for National Geographic recently. “It was an ambitious but achievable goal — and an important promise to women in the world’s poorest places that they will not be forgotten.”
The Gates Foundation has been funneling money into global programs promoting population control and abortion after the 2012 London summit warned that international family planning goals are not being met.
Gates’s renewed vigor for this mission is likely linked to the current political climate. After being sworn in, President Trump signed an executive order reinstating a so-called global gag rule, which prohibits U.S. funding to clinics that provide abortion services overseas, according to a report from The Hill.
Gates said she and her husband, Bill, used contraception to plan their three children, and she wants women across the world to have the same tools that she did. In total, their foundation donated more than $1 billion toward international family planning efforts, according to the report.
“The decision about whether and when to get pregnant was a decision that Bill and I made based on what was right for me and what was right for our family—and that’s something I feel lucky about. There are still over 225 million women around the world who don’t have access to the modern contraceptives they need to make these decisions for themselves,” Gates continued.
However, many groups had concerns about the population control undercurrents of the 2012 summit goals.
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In fact, the dangers posed by the Summit are so extreme that many population control groups (including the Center for Reproductive Rights, which never met an abortion it didn’t like) issued a warning before the Summit. The “Civil Society Declaration” condemns “Policies that accept or tacitly condone forced sterilization [and] the coercive provision of contraceptives. … Any return to coercive family planning programs where quality of care and informed consent are ignored would be both shocking and retrograde.”
One certainly does not want to be perceived as “retrograde,” but these groups have good reason to be concerned. The co-sponsor of the London Summit on Family Planning was the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DfID). This government agency contributed $261.4 million to India’s most recent forced sterilization program. This type of quota- and bounty-based population program inevitably leads to gross and widespread human rights violations.
The billionaire family’s money goes to some of the largest abortion chains in the world, including Planned Parenthood and Marie Stopes International.
According to the Gates Foundation grant database, the foundation gave Planned Parenthood of America, the International Planned Parenthood Federation, and Planned Parenthood of Western Washington about $71 million from before 2009 through 2013. Additionally, the Gates Foundation gave $46.1 million to Marie Stopes International in 2012 alone.
Much of this giving is focused on Africa, Asia and Latin America, where abortion-providers like Planned Parenthood, Marie Stopes, and Ipas seek to overturn pro-life laws and sometimes even provide illicit abortion drugs.
While Gates Foundation funds cannot be earmarked for abortion, the fungibility of money makes it easier for these organizations to provide abortion internationally. In other words, every dollar the Gates Foundation gives to Planned Parenthood for distributing birth control or building an abortion-friendly clinic frees up a dollar in Planned Parenthood’s budget to spend elsewhere.
In 2012, Melinda Gates was criticized for promoting abortion and population control at the international meeting.
The same year, she was criticized for hosting a Family Planning Summit in London with two of the biggest pro-abortion groups in the world, the UN Population Fund and International Planned Parenthood Federation.