U.S. Foundations Give Millions to Law Firm to Promote Abortions Worldwide
by Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D.
August 15, 2008
LifeNews.com Note: Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D. writes for the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute. This article originally appeared in the pro-life group’s Friday Fax publication.
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com/CFAM) — The Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR), a prominent U.S.-based public interest group litigating and lobbying for pro-abortion policies world-wide, has released its annual report for 2007.
The reported CRR budget confirms that large US foundations continue their heavy financial support for radical social policies not only in the US, but all over the world.
The report shows that close to fifty percent of CRRs $14 million budget is financed by more than forty American foundations.
The Hewlett and Packard foundations lead the way. Other prominent donors include Ford and MacArthur foundations as well as George Soros Open Society Institute.
CRR is also supported financially by the UN Population Fund, which claims to take a neutral position on abortion
The report highlights CRR campaigns in six foreign countries and the US, campaigns which have focused predominantly on promoting the pro-abortion interpretation of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), fighting against sexual abstinence education programs, legalizing abortion, and promoting contraception.
The report also lists CRRs involvement in legal challenges to overturn pro-life laws in seventeen foreign countries.
The case studies included in the report illustrate the strategy CRR uses in promoting its agenda. CRRs tactic is to present its cases before UN treaty monitoring bodies to elicit pro-abortion treaty interpretations from them.
Although non-binding, CRR then uses these interpretations in its friend-of-the-court briefs submitted to domestic courts, or in local public media campaigns. CRR also partners with local NGOs to help CRR in its efforts.
In 2007, this tactic was used in Brazil when CRR presented a case before the CEDAW committee accusing Brazil of not fulfilling its treaty obligations by supposedly not providing appropriate emergency obstetric care.
According to a CRR briefing at last years Women Deliver conference, CRRs strategy for the next several years will be trying to get a national court to rule that maternal health is a human right that already exists somewhere in international law and that legal abortion is required to fulfill that right.
They are testing this approach in a case they recently brought against Brazil.
In Europe, CRR brought a case against the Croatian government before the European Committee of Social Rights, which is a treaty body of the Council of Europe a regional human rights organization.
CRR claims that Croatias use of TeenStar an abstinence education program developed in the US promotes discrimination and spreads false information among teenagers.
CRR also wrote two friend-of-the-court briefs to support a pro-abortion challenge in Slovakian and Nicaraguan Supreme Courts. CRR succeeded in defending abortion law in Slovakia, while other developments are pending.
The report reveals that CRR has spent US foundations money abroad to develop and test its controversial litigation techniques to then try them at home. CRR is about to sponsor a Visiting Scholar and a Future Scholar Fellowship programs to teach law school professors and their students how to apply CRRs successful legal advocacy strategies in the U.S.
The CRR report also announced its Federal Policy Agenda that describes these strategies and how they can be applied in the American legal context.
In 2007, CRR experts testified against the US before the UN treaty body which monitors compliance with the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (CERD).
CRR elicited a ruling condemning the US for not guaranteeing equal access to reproductive healthcare. CRR claims that these findings will be an invaluable tool as we introduce our human rights approach into our U.S. work.
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