Trump Admin Expands Anti-Abortion Foreign Aid Policy

Trump Admin Expands Anti-Abortion Foreign Aid Policy

CBN News' David Brody first reported that the Mexico City Policy will be expanded by drastically increasing the amount of global health funds that have to abide by it.

Another of the administration officials said it would be up to the partner NGOs to decide whether they want to continue taking USA funding and complying with the requirement - or not. An organization must "agree in writing" that they will follow this policy in order to receive funds. "We know this because we saw it under previous versions of the policy - and this rule goes even further".

The International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) said in January that it would lose $100 million from the Mexico City policy being reinstated. In essence, President Trump is taking the pro-life policy to a whole different level.

People in developing countries want help-they want food for their children, they want shelter over their heads, they want to live in a safe environment, they want learning and training so they can take care of, and provide for, their families.

Foreign non-governmental organizations are already prohibited from receiving money for family planning programs if that organization "performs or actively promotes abortion as a method of family planning", according to guidance issued by the State Department in March.

The global gag rule, which Trump reinstated via executive order earlier in his term, bans any US aid to worldwide organizations that support the practice of abortion.

Governments and multilateral organizations remain outside of the scope of the expanded policy, which also will not apply to humanitarian aid provided through refugee or migration programs or to disaster relief. The expansion covers the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief and the President's Malaria Initiative, both of which were established under President George W. Bush but did not contain restrictions on abortion funding at the time. Shannon Kowalski, Director of Advocacy and Policy of the International Women's Health Coalition, told the The Independent that it will be devastating.

The policy applies to approximately $8.8 billion in funds appropriated to the Department of State, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and the Department of Defense.

That confusion was cleared up yesterday when the State Department yesterday confirmed that, indeed, a massive expansion of the Global Gag Rule is underway.

Now the policy prevents $8.8 billion US taxpayer dollars in foreign aid from going to organizations that perform or promote abortion. By the year 2020, the group states as a goal on its website, 90 percent of all women who access abortion and post-abortion services in their centers will also receive a modern method of contraception. It won't be known which organisations could benefit, they said, until the groups with existing contracts decide what to do.

Since it was unveiled, the Mexico City rule has been routinely rescinded under Democratic administrations and reinstated under Republican ones, and is used by presidents to signal where they stand on abortion rights. "Abortion is not health care", she said in a statement.

"If a mother is coming in for nutrition support or vaccines for her child, she would be coming to the same rural clinic that provides a suite of services to the community", says Loyce Pace of the Global Health Council.

"The Trump Administration has made a decision to use the power of its purse to endanger the lives of girls and women around the world on an unprecedented scale".

Democratic Reps Nita M Lowey, Eliot L Engel and Louise M Slaughter of NY, and Barbara Lee of California marked the rule's start by calling it "a cruel and unprecedented attack on the world's most vulnerable women".