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Global Gag Rule Repealed!

Statement of SIECUS President Joseph DiNorcia, Jr.
on the Repeal of the Global Gag Rule
We are thrilled that President Barack Obama, as one of his first actions in office, issued an executive order today repealing the Global Gag Rule.  We commend President Obama for taking what we hope is the first step of many to undo the harmful reproductive health policies put in place by the Administration of George W. Bush. The Global Gag Rule prevents non-governmental organizations in other nations from receiving federal funds if they either provide abortions or referrals for abortion even if they do so using their own, independent funds.  The rule, established by President Ronald Reagan in 1984, was repealed by President Bill Clinton in 1993 and reinstated by President Bush in 2001.
Years of the Bush administration’s promotion of moralistic policies at the expense of the health and well-being of some of the most vulnerable members of society must be undone.  So much damage to reproductive and sexual health and rights has been done over the past eight years that we can only hope that the repeal of this rule is the first step in reintroducing science, fairness, and, frankly, sanity to federal government policies at home and abroad.  President Obama’s decision to repeal this rule will undoubtedly save lives by allowing greater access to comprehensive health services.
Today, one day after the 36th anniversary of the Supreme Court decision in Roe vs. Wade, it is most important for us to remain vigilant as the radical right wing will undoubtedly feel renewed commitment to denying us our basic rights and freedoms. Only with the hard work of advocates and believers in reproductive choice and rights, in combination with true dedication by the new administration and President Obama, will we be able to make this repeal the very first step in a lasting era of global health and rights.
For more information or with other questions contact Patrick Malone at (212)819-9770 ext. 316 during normal business hours or at all times.