Women Challenge Vatican’s Views on Population Control

On Thursday, 126 women’s groups presented a letter to the Vatican questioning its attitude towards a population control plan agreed upon in Cairo five years ago. This plan focuses on sex education, safe abortions, and contraceptive advice. Essentially, the goal is to better educate women on reproductive issues and choices that will better enable them to control the size of their families.

The Vatican, with the support of several Muslim nations, opposes this approach to controlling the world population. Women’s organizations have inquired how “a church that holds life as ‘a fundamental value’ could watch thousands of women die because they lack access to family planning and abortion.” Also, they asked why the Vatican is in favor of parents presiding over sex education, when in fact, significant abuse occurs in the home. In addition, the letter questioned the Church’s commitment to social justice if they disagree with “women’s achieving aspirations fundamental to their ïjust and human development.'”

In concurrence with this attack, Catholics for a Free Choice is seeking to lessen the Vatican’s position in the U.N. from an observing member to the status of a non-governmental organization. This means that the Vatican would no longer be able to voice its opinion to the other members of the U.N.


New York Times - July 2, 1999

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