WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Roger Wicker, R-Miss., and Cindy Hyde-Smith, R-Miss., and U.S. Representatives Steven Palazzo, R-Miss., and Michael Guest, R-Miss. joined more than 50 lawmakers asking the World Health Organization (WHO) to retract its recent far-reaching guidelines on abortion.
In a letter to WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the lawmakers expressed strong opposition to the agency’s updated Abortion Care Guideline, which advocates for abortion on demand, dismisses conscious objections of healthcare providers, and puts pressure on governments to adopt the recommended policies. The updated guidelines follow years of controversy regarding the role, allegiance, and effectiveness of the WHO, an arm of the United Nations.
U.S. Senator Mike Lee, R-Utah and U.S. Representative Doug Lamborn, R-Colo. spearheaded the effort.
“We, members of the U.S. Congress, write to you today with concerns about the World Health Organization’s (W.H.O.) dangerous new abortion guidelines. These extreme new guidelines aim to remove all legal and policy safeguards on abortion, impose restrictions on the conscience rights of health workers, and ignore the right to life and the safety of the mother and child,” the lawmakers wrote.
The lawmakers criticize the WHO for attempting to dehumanize preborn children, categorizing abortion as “self-care,” and demanding “the full decriminalization of abortion” without any gestational age limits.
“To categorize abortions as ‘self-care’ not only strips away the humanity and dignity of a preborn child but also contradicts international standards recognizing the preborn child as a rights-holding person,” the lawmakers continued.
The guidance, the lawmakers assert, also dismisses the rights of individuals and institutions that oppose abortions on ethical, moral, personal, or religious grounds.
“The W.H.O.’s radical stance reveals that it is all too willing to cave to pressure from the abortion industry and to force health care providers to choose between committing violence against an innocent baby and her mother, or being unemployed,” the lawmakers added. “This stance also inevitably threatens patient access to health care in geographic areas that are primarily served by faith-based health care providers given that those who hold conscience objections would be deemed unfit for service.”
“Given the W.H.O.’s influence, this guidance will likely cause severe, irreversible harm, not only to U.S. citizens but to women and children worldwide,” the lawmakers concluded. “Such overreach and trampling of national sovereignty also further delegitimizes the W.H.O. and U.N. in the eyes of many people around the world. For these reasons, we ask that the W.H.O. reverse course and retract the anti-life recommendations that it has promoted through the release of its 2022 abortion care guidelines.”
The full text of the letter can be found here.