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U.S. Commitment Statement to the Nairobi Summit on ICPD25

Empowering women and girls to thrive

The United States shares this statement of our commitment to empowering women and girls to thrive, but this statement is only intended for the purposes of this reading and is not to be used as an endorsement of the commitments of this summit.

Twenty-five years ago, the ICPD conference reached consensus on three goals: reducing child and maternal mortality, equal access to education, and universal access to family planning and related health care1- all within a broad development agenda.

For more than 40 years, the U.S. Government has been, and will be a prime advocate and will continue to invest in programs which empower women and girls to realize their full potential, reinforce their inherent dignity, promote and advance their equality, protect their inalienable rights, and support optimal health outcomes across their lifespans. Families, positive male figures, (including caring fathers), communities, and civil society, (including faith based organizations), play an important role in supporting women and girls to thrive.

To that end, the United States commits to its ongoing health and development efforts to

  • Combat gender-based violence (GBV) by investing in programs that help build societies where the human rights of women and girls are respected, and by providing skills, and opportunities for women, without compromising the inherent value of every human life – born and unborn.
  • Prevent child, early, and forced marriage (CEFM) and female genital mutilation and cutting (FGM/C), particularly in regions, countries, and communities where interventions are most needed and most likely to be effective.
  • Counter-Trafficking in Persons (C-TIP) through a root-driven approach that prevents this crime, protects victims and survivors, prosecutes traffickers and partners with force multipliers.
  • Global Health Initiatives that are holistic in nature, including:
    • End the HIV epidemic through PEPFAR, which addresses many of the underlying factors that make girls and young women particularly vulnerable to HIV.
    • Preventing Child and Maternal Deaths with lifesaving health care which has contributed to a dramatic drop in under-5 mortality and maternal mor­tality.
    • Voluntary and informed Family Planning. The U.S. is committed to promoting a healthy understanding of child spacing and non-coercive family planning to help couples either achieve or prevent pregnancy. The U.S. is the largest bilateral funder for family planning. That hasn’t changed. Our global health programs, including those for family planning, are consistent with the ICPD pronouncement that abortion is not a method of family planning and that programs should seek to provide women alternatives to abortion.
    • Combating Infectious Diseases. For decades, the U.S. Government, and especially our CDC and NIH have been leaders in the control and prevention of infectious diseases. That will continue.

The U.S. investment in women and girls has increased under President Trump with these new efforts:

  • First Lady Melania Trump’s BE BEST Initiative champions programs to provide children with the tools and skills required for emotional, social, and physical health.
  • The USAID Education Policy promotes equal educational access, opportunities, and outcomes between girls and boys.2
  • Advancing Protection and Care for Children in Adversity strengthens the capacities of children, adolescents, and their families, to help them thrive.3
  • The Women’s Global Development and Prosperity (W-GDP) Initiative focuses on improving access for 50 million women to gain full and free participation in the global economy.
  • The Women, Peace & Security (WPS) strategy promotes the roles women can play as leaders in political and civic life, as agents of change in the peacemaking process.

The U.S. is committed to continuing to invest in women and girls. President Trump said it well: “By investing in women around the world, we’re investing in families, we’re investing in prosperity, and we’re investing in peace.”4

Content created by Office of Global Affairs (OGA)
Content last reviewed on November 13, 2019