Combating Gender-Based Violence: A Key to Achieving the MDGs

In Celebration of International Women’s Day Activists Lobby for Safe Motherhood

Washington, DC- March 6, 2008 – On Thursday, March 6th, in celebration of International Women’s Day, activists from across the United States visit Capitol Hill to call for increased political will and financial commitment to end maternal death.

Every minute somewhere in the world a women dies in pregnancy and childbirth and almost all of these deaths are preventable. UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, is the largest international source of assistance working toward safe motherhood.

UNFPA has identified three solutions to ensure safe motherhood:
All women who want it have access to modern contraception
All pregnant women have access to skilled birth attendants
All pregnant women have timely access to emergency obstetric care

The United States is the only country in the world to withhold funds from UNFPA and its safe motherhood programs for reasons that are political, not financial.

Activists are approaching Senators and Representatives for International Woman’s Day to ask for the following commitments:

Additionally, from the first session of the 110 Congress, Americans for UNFPA supports:

“In the last twenty years, 10 million women’s lives have been lost in pregnancy and childbirth. In the next twenty years, we want the United States to be a leader in international efforts to significantly reduce maternal death,” says Anika Rahman, President, Americans for UNFPA.