CHANGE’s Statement on President Biden’s First 100 Days in Office

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 30, 2021

CONTACT: Madison Donzis | [email protected]

Sexual and Reproductive Rights Experts Issue Statement on President Biden’s First 100 Days in Office 

CHANGE (Center for Health & Gender Equity) Applauds the Administration’s Steps to Address Gender Equality & Human Rights, Say There is More to be Done to Advance US Global Health Commitments

WASHINGTON, DC -- Serra Sippel, President of CHANGE (Center for Health and Gender Equity) issued the following statement as President Biden’s first 100 days in office come to a close:

“In its first 100 days, the Biden-Harris Administration has adopted support for sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) as official U.S. policy, a victory for women and girls and others who are discriminated against in the U.S. and around the world. 

“CHANGE applauds the administration's recent actions and is encouraged to see the administration following through on its earlier promises to advance the health and rights of women and girls, both domestically and abroad, and to actively dismantle vindictive and extremist policies imposed on hundreds of thousands of people all over the world by the Trump administration. Biden’s support for sexual and reproductive health and rights has given the U.S. government the platform to get back on track to align with the global community in support of universal access to SRHR. 

“But there is more to be done in order to build back better; to achieve true gender equality. 

“Prioritizing SRHR in U.S. foreign policy will mean better coordination among agencies in the area of global health. We expect that it will also mean bold leadership in permanently ending the Global Gag Rule and Helms Amendment, and correct interpretation of existing law to allow U.S. support for abortion access in the cases of rape, incest and life endangerment.

“The U.S. government’s recognition and inclusion of sexual rights, which includes the experiences of transgender, non-binary, and gender non-conforming people, puts the U.S. government on course to fully embrace a global SRHR agenda. As Secretary Blinken has stated, ‘women’s rights - including sexual and reproductive rights - are human rights,’ and without basic human rights for all, there is no gender equality.

“We hope that in President Biden’s next 100 days U.S. policy in support of SRHR will be put into action. 

In the Biden-Harris administration’s first 100 days, it has taken the following actions to advance SRHR globally:

  • Rescinded the Global Gag Rule, a Reagan-era policy that prevented U.S. foreign aid to organizations around the world from providing abortion services and counseling;
  • Issued a memorandum directing the Secretary of State and the Secretary of Health and Human Services to withdraw co-sponsorship and signature from the anti-abortion, anti-LGBTQI+ Geneva Consensus Declaration and notify other co-sponsors and signatories to the Declaration and other appropriate parties of the United States' withdrawal;
  • Signed an executive order establishing the White House Gender Policy Council, which established a government-wide approach to addressing gender equality and human rights of women and girls who face intersecting forms of discrimination, including explicitly stating the council will promote sexual and reproductive health and rights;
  • Reversed the Trump administration's removal of sections on reproductive rights from the State Department's annual human rights report stating, “women’s rights — including sexual and reproductive rights — are human rights”; 
  • Further scrapped a report developed by former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s Commission on Unalienable Rights, an unlawfully biased panel of members who have loudly opposed LGBTQ+ rights, women’s rights, and SRHR;
  • Sent the highest level and most diverse delegation of Americans in history to the United Nation’s 65th Commission on the Status of Women-- marking the first time the U.S. was represented at the White House-level at CSW and the first time two women of color co-led the delegation.

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