UNICEF TRIES TO COOPT THE CHURCH
by Jean M. Guilfoyle
The United Nation's Children's Fund (UNICEF) is creating confusion among
Catholics throughout the world by claiming endorsement from the Roman
Catholic Church. Such claims imply that the Church is willing to overlook
UNICEF's population control programs, which advocate abortion and utilize
bookjuggling antics to fund abortifacients and sterilizations throughout
UNICEF seeks the appearance of Church support despite the fact that the
Catholic Church has specifically condemned "contraceptive imperialism" in
Third World countries and has called for "respect for traditional cultures,
where women do not want abortifacients, where men do not want their
children to be aborted, where sterilization is an affront to human dignity
and integrity because it destroys the sacred fruitfulness of women and men"
(Submission of the Catholic Church to the Conference of the Council for
International Organizations of Medical Sciences, Thailand: HLI, 1988;
reprinted from "L'Osservatore Romano," 18 July, 1988).
In addition, Archbishop Renato R. Martino, Permanent Observer of the Holy
See to the United Nations, in a statement to the executive board of UNICEF
in April 1990, warned that:
"... the Holy See views with great alarm some repeated proposals to the
effect that this United Nations agency, established for the well-being of
children, become involved in the destruction of existing human life, even
to the point of suggesting that UNICEF become an advocate for abortion in
countries whose sovereign legislation does not allow it. The Holy See
firmly opposes such proposals not only on moral grounds, but also because
they would bring a totally unacceptable deviation from the stated purpose
of UNICEF in favor of children.
"Moreover, such proposals appear to reveal a dangerous form of neo-
colonialism--to which the developing countries are justifiably sensitive--
where the mighty will try to impose on the less powerful the adoption of
practices contrary to those cultural, social, moral and religious values
which have historically formed their heritage and have sustained them in
their difficult path to independence and development.
"The Holy See maintains that the interests of children will be promoted and
assured by the real development of their countries. that will provide them
with the educational, economic and social rights to which their right to
life entitles them."
UNICEF assertions that a Vatican donation of $3000 is a symbolic gesture of
support for the UNICEF world population control agenda are also
contradicted by Archbishop Martino's April 1990 statement. In that
statement he carefully describes the limited purpose of the Vatican
donation as ". . . earmarked for the budget for mobilization activities
related to the forthcoming World Summit for Children" on behalf of ". . .
the Pontifical Society of the Holy Childhood--an agency which aims at
forming in children and adolescents awareness of and solidarity for the
resources and needs of their fellow children throughout the world."
UNICEF networks are a major vehicle for abortion pressures, abortifacient
drugs, devices and sterilizations promoted by the United Nations Fund for
Population Activities (UNFPA), the World Health Organization (WHO), the
World Bank, and the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF).
UNFPA has been denied funding by the United States Congress because of its
involvement in the direction and management of the coerced abortion and
sterilization program in China. Both UNFPA and IPPF are noted for their
abortion advocacy and activity. IPPF has supplied vacuum aspiration kits
for abortions, illegally, to the Philippines, Bangladesh, Korea, Singapore,
Hong Kong, Vietnam and India. Yet UNICEF has provided funds for both
organizations ("The Hastings Center Report," Vol. 10, No. 2, April, 1980).
UNICEF's financial linkage with IPPF programs has been based on that
organization's "pioneer work in linking family planning with women's
development" (IPPF Update, 1985).
UNICEF's collaborative organizational efforts in Third World countries
saturate desperately needed survival care programs with pressures for the
acceptance of abortifacient drugs, devices and sterilizations. Village
"motivators" and Traditional Birth Attendants trained with UNICEF funds
directly propagandize rural populations and pregnant women. Intervention
between family members in order to promote these methodologies is common in
such community efforts and programs.
It must be observed that the lack of access to alternative health care
options, combined with the high-pressure tactics of population control
idealogues, destroys patients' abilities to give informed consent in health
care settings. Such conditions exist in UNICEF Maternal and Child Health
care clinics (MCH) where patients are subjected to the politicized
propaganda and health-destroying technologies of international population
control idealogues such as UNFPA, IPPF, WHO and the World Bank.
UNICEF denies that it advocates any particular family planning methods or
abortion. It denies that it funds contraceptive supplies and sterilization
programs. In fact, the public record shows that UNICEF "does not advocate
any particular view on the choice of the family planning method" but
instead promotes all methods, indiscriminately.
Since the late 1960s, UNICEF and the World Health Organization (WHO) joint
committee have operated on the assumption that "family planning was an
integral part of comprehensive health service." The WHO began to stress
that "any measure for preventing or interrupting pregnancy must be
integrated with MCH services." UNICEF complied with the effort to make
family planning a part of health services. It was by that time already
understood that family planning included condoms, pills and IUDs. In 1966,
Henry Labouisse, executive director of UNICEF, proposed that UNICEF help
might be used to establish family planning elements in expanded MCH
services. By the end of the 1960s, UNICEF was willing to "provide
contraceptive supplies" (Maggie Black, "The Children and the Nations, The
Story of UNICEF," 238-259 at 254).
With the assistance of the United States and Sweden in 1968, a trust fund,
the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) was established within the
United Nations. UNFPA provided UNICEF with funds for family planning
components of health programs which UNICEF was already supporting (254-5).
At the World Population Conference in 1974, WHO, supported by UNICEF,
worked to establish a public policy "link between health care and family
planning." Formulating an individualized, promotional approach, Henry
Labouisse stated, ". . . to be really effective, national policies in the
population field must be translated into specific measures that directly
touch the lives of individual families" (257).
James Grant, the present UNICEF executive director, attending the
conference in his capacity as president of the Overseas Council, echoed the
theme in the opening statement of his address when he said, "The central
issue of our time may well turn out to be how the world addresses the
problem of ever-expanding human numbers" ("National Concord," Friday, Jan.
Following through on these goals, by the late 1970s the family planning
issue formed a significant "link in the chain of UNICEF's overall policy
evolution." A new WHO/UNICEF strategy for "alternative health care"
developed in which "village health workers" operated as "a tier of
satellites at the outermost edge" in carrying out government population
Since that time UNICEF and WHO have cooperated within the domain of UNFPA
programs "in creation of population awareness for policy makers and opinion
leaders...." This cooperation has included "contraceptive prevalence and
fertility preference." Population control pressures and methodologies were
also integrated into sanitation, parasite control and nutrition programs
(1987 Report by the Executive Director of UNFPA).
Citing even a small selection of specific UNICEF activities provides an
illustration of their organizational commitment to using all available
means to accomplish their worldwide population control objectives:
Jamaica: UNICEF received $720,684 in UNFPA funds for the
purchase of contraceptives for National Family Planning Program
(UNFPA Inventory of Population Projects in Developing Countries
Around the World 1987/88, p. 281).
Kenya: UNICEF received $0.7 million from the World Bank for a
Population Project which established an interagency information
and education program for the promotion of a small family norm;
and provided funds for the establishment of 300 new Maternal and
Child Health Family Planning (MCH/FP) units and an additional
300 Health Centres to be operated by the Ministry of Health. "In
order to increase the projects impact on fertility, the project
was amended in 1985 to include the establishment of surgical
contraceptive facilities in 13 district hospitals and family
planning clinics" (292).
Malawi: UNICEF received $1.8 million from the World Bank to
participate in a "Family Health Project" whose components
included MCH services, primary health care, child spacing and
nutrition. The project would assist in the development of
surgical contraception services (sterilization) and expand urban
and rural family health services, training staff, traditional
birth and village health attendants. The population increase
would be slowed through an increase in women using modern
contraceptive methods (333).
Nepal: UNICEF received $795,569 from UNFPA to participate in a
joint project to support FP/MCH activities; provide selected
contraceptives; and organize, expand and improve the quality of
sterilization in mobile units country-wide and in regular health
institutions in non-integrated districts (395).
Further examples of their self-described efforts to promote population
policies and programs, maternal and child health care, primary health care
and "other health services with family planning components" (UNFPA Guide to
Sources of Population Assistance 1985, pp. 23-4) include:
Bangladesh: UNFPA provided $5,453,023 to UNICEF to "support
integrated maternal and child health/family planning services
and the Population Control and Family Planning Division
("Inventory of Population Projects in Developing Countries
Around the World" 1988/1989, p. 28).
Cape Verde: UNFPA funds in the amount of $59,719 went to UNICEF
to participate in a program for the purchase of contraceptives
for MCH/FP project (97).
Burundi: World Bank funds in the amount of $1.8 million were
given to UNICEF for the purposes of engaging in a Population and
Health Project "to improve maternal and child health status" by
strengthening MCH/FP services and nutrition and "to increase
contraceptive prevalence to 14 per cent by 1992" (86).
The escalation of UNICEF population control and family reduction activities
are demonstrated further in the "UNFPA Inventory of Population Projects in
Developing Countries Around the World" 1989 /1990. One reads about:
China. This is of particular note since the U.S. continues to
deny funds to UNFPA because of its involvement in the coercive
population control policies in China. UNICEF has received monies
from UNFPA to sponsor a consultant for the technical aspects of
a joint UNICEF/UNFPA project to strengthen MCH/FP at the
grassroots level. Budget: 1990, $95,000; 1991, $120,000 (115).
UNICEF/Kenya, UNICEF/United Republic of Tanzania, and
UNICEF/Uganda distributed a primary school education magazine,
"Pied Crow Environmental Special Magazine." The publication is a
seven issue series on awareness of population growth for primary
school children (296).
Malaysia: UNICEF participated as executing agent in a $6.5
million UNFPA Project to consolidate current population programs
and further integrate family planning with other family
development programs (331).
UNICEF attempts to beg the question of their complicity by crying, "clean
hands, clean hands!" while funding the clinics, stocking the shelves,
training the midwives and village health workers (patterned after the
Chinese 'barefoot doctor' program) and, at the same time, slyly using World
Bank and UNFPA funds to pay for the vans which tour the countryside of
developing nations sterilizing the people. The public record provides a
clear chronicle of UNICEF's operations which fund abortion advocacy,
abortifacient/contraceptive supplies and sterilization.
No opportunity is lost by UNICEF to dive behind the respectable mask of the
Catholic Church in order to mimic and exploit a religious and cultural
milieu which speaks to the people in a language they trust. As an
organization with access to large numbers of people, the Catholic Church
furnishes ready opportunities for influence peddling and fund raising among
congregations naturally sympathetic to the well-being of children.
Further, many of the populations which UNICEF, UNFPA, the World Bank and
others would like to "reduce" live in countries with predominantly Catholic
populations, such as Latin America, Asia and the Philippines.
Pope John Paul II enunciated Catholic ethical values, which contrast
sharply with UNICEF's manipulative policies, as he addressed the UNICEF
Directors of Latin America and the Caribbean. "We are all called to join,"
he said, "efforts to preserve life, including life before birth, and to
offer all children the resources they need for their physical and spiritual
growth, to which every person has an inalienable right .... I encourage you
to continue with untiring enthusiasm in your task . . . to work for the
integral good of children; to maintain and improve evermore a culture of
life that respects all the moral principles; to assure children, especially
the poorest and most defenseless, the necessary conditions so that they can
be fittingly inserted into society" ("L'Osservatore Romano," English
language edition, 23 Jan. 1989).
In contrast to these principles, UNICEF policies attempt radically to alter
the cultural values of countries in order to incorporate technologies which
ultimately restrict the full development of individuals in their personal
relationships and deny the right of existence to the children of the poor
Complicating this situation is the almost exclusive "ownership" of medical
and health care resources by the major industrial nations. It is these
nations which are the major government financiers and promoters of
"integrated" population control methodologies in UNICEF/UNFPA/WHO/World
Bank/IPPF maternal and child health care centers. In particular, UNICEF
maternal and child health care programs have become riddled with the
aggressive politics of "those-who-know-best" among the population
controllers. It is not unusual for Catholic Church officials, who are
attempting to provide health care for mothers and children within their
jurisdictions, to be trapped between the urgent plight of the needy poor
and the knowledge that their people will be exposed to these destructive
and manipulative policies and practices.
UNICEF efforts reveal a tragic exploitation and victimization of children
through the imposition of doctrinaire population control programs which
kill their brothers and sisters, intervene in family relationships and
subject their parents to life-threatening surgeries and abortifacients.
It is imperative that UNICEF officials be pressured to stop their
deceptive claims of endorsement by the Catholic Church, claims which give
scandal to the world and unjustly burden the spiritual well-being of
informed, faithful Catholics in all nations. Further, the Vatican should
withdraw all Church funding of UNICEF until that organization ceases its
abortion promotion and contraceptive/ abortifacient/sterilization
activities among God's people.
Under the banner "Safe Motherhood," an interagency partnership
composed of UNICEF, the World Bank, the U.N. Development
Program, WHO, UNFPA, IPPF, and the U.S. AID-funded Population
Council has been formed. It is a political/economic tool to
break down abortion restrictions in developing nations, the
"partnership" plans to make the fear of death the motivating
passion needed to drive mothers toward acceptance of
government-sponsored "choices." The World Bank will use economic
coercion and fund the agenda.