The Biden administration voiced its radical pro-abortion position to the world during the UN Human Rights Council’s adoption of the report of the third Universal Periodic Review (UPR) for the U.S. stating that the administration “believes in the advancement of gender equality and women’s and girl’s empowerment” and that this includes “promoting their sexual and reproductive health and rights, both in the United States and globally.”
Lisa Peterson, Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, delivered the US remarks making it clear that President Biden had already acted to change the pro-life policies of President Trump by revoking the Trump administration’s Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance Policy—formerly called the Mexico City Policy—and withdrawing the US from the Geneva Consensus Declaration which had declared that there is no international right to abortion. She voiced Biden’s commitment to abortionism by adding, “These steps will help improve the lives of women and girls by increasing their access to critical health services.” The only health service denied by the pro-life policy and position was abortion on demand.
The UPR is the only time that UN Member States make recommendations to each other based on human rights concerns. The country under review does not have to accept the recommendations but Peterson stated that the US “supported a number of recommendations from Norway, Canada, Austria, Mexico, and others related to sexual and reproductive health and rights.” In fact, the US received recommendations related to access to abortion, including international funding for abortion, from 14 countries and accepted all as listed in Addendum 1 of the Outcome of the Review.
The recommendations by Norway, Austria, Canada, Netherlands and New Zealand called on the U.S. to end pro-life funding restrictions on U.S. foreign aid. The Netherlands specified that it recommended that the U.S. “Repeal the Helms Amendment”, which prevents the U.S. from directly funding abortion as a method of family planning in foreign assistance.
France, Iceland, Luxembourg, Malaysia, and Mexico used various phrasing to call on the U.S. to ensure access by women and girls in the U.S. to sexual and reproductive health information, education, and services.
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Australia directed its recommendation to conscience protections recommending, “Ensure that laws permitting the refusal of care based on religious and moral beliefs do not restrict women’s sexual and reproductive health and rights and that measures are put in place to monitor and prevent violations of these rights.”
Denmark wants the U.S. to “Rescind the Title X restrictions to ensure access to comprehensive family planning services for all”.
Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) and other pro-abortion organizations were ecstatic with the U.S. response and expressed their eagerness to work with President Biden to expand access to abortion in the U.S. and around the world. PPFA’s press release, Biden-Harris Administration Declares to UN It Will Protect and Advance Sexual and Reproductive Rights, states, “the Biden-Harris administration formally notified the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council that it supports access to sexual and reproductive health care as a human right, and also committed to take steps to protect and advance that access in the U.S. and around the world.” Alexis McGill Johnson, president of PPFA said, “This is a deeply meaningful statement from the administration, as our nation works to undo the harm of the last four years, rejoin the international community, and work with partners around the globe to advance health care access and rights for all people.”
The Center for Reproductive Rights issued a joint statement with Ipas, Amnesty International, NARAL, and International Women’s Health Coalition and others commending “the United States for supporting recommendations related to advancing comprehensive sexual and reproductive health and rights” and urged the U.S. “to fully implement these recommendations” and to “champion legislation and take administrative action to ensure access to comprehensive reproductive health care for all, including abortion care, globally and in the United States.”
According to the Center, the actions expected to be implemented by the Biden administration following the UPR include “allowing access to medication abortion by telemedicine; ending the discriminatory Hyde Amendment; stopping over-broad implementation of the Helms Amendment; and restoring reporting on sexual and reproductive health and rights in the State Department’s annual Country Reports on Human Rights Practices.”
It listed the top pro-abortion legislative targets stating, “The administration should also champion federal legislation such as the Women’s Health Protection Act, which would safeguard abortion access; the EACH Act (Equitable Access to Care and Health Act), which would reverse the Hyde Amendment and related abortion funding restrictions; the Global HER Act (Global Health, Empowerment, and Rights Act), which would permanently repeal the Global Gag Rule; the Abortion is Health Care Everywhere Act, which would repeal the Helms Amendment; and the Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act, which would address racial disparities in maternal health care.”
The U.S. also accepted recommendations for the U.S. to ratify CEDAW, notorious for the pro-abortion activism by members of its treaty body, but the U.S. Senate is responsible for treaty ratification.
In regard to the U.S. and the Organization of American States, the U.S. rejected a recommendation by Chile to “Consider acceding to the American Convention on Human Rights and recognizing the competence of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and the Inter-American Court of Human Rights” stating that “we do not support the part concerning recognizing the competence of the IACtHR.”