El Salvador: The latest victim of Development & Peace

by Steve G.

Just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse, Murphy’s Law kicks in.  Today I introduce to you the 46th partner of Development and Peace that is advocating for anti-life, anti-Catholic policy changes in the Global South. They are also directly opposing the local bishops on public policy related to abortion.

The partner is a feminist group called “Concertación de Mujeres” (meaning “Women’s Coordinating Body”), which is identified on page 104 of D&P’s list of partners in Latin America.  This group operates in El Salvador, a country with a very deep Christian heritage.  In fact, the name El Salvador is Spanish for The Saviour.  The capital city is San Salvador, which means Holy Saviour.

This is the first anti-life, anti-Catholic D&P partner that we have identified in El Salvador, but it won’t be the last.  If we hoped that D&P would behave itself in a country named after Our Saviour, of all places, we were gravely mistaken.

Concertación de Mujeres is a member of a feminist coalition called Concertacion Feminista Prudencia Ayala, which published a “Feminist Platform 2009-2014” that lays out all their beliefs and political demands.  You can see Concertación de Mujeres listed as a co-signatory of the Platform on the last page of the document.  So what do they stand for?

  • On page 8 of the Platform, they bluntly ask for the legalization of abortion.  No subtleties or euphemisms here.  They demand that the Legislative Assembly:

“Legally guarantee  safe conditions to perform voluntary interruptions of pregnancy without any risks to the health and life of the woman; decriminalize abortion and legalize therapeutic abortion.”

Give them credit for being up-front about it and not hiding behind terms like “reproductive health” (although they use that expression in a few places too).

  • On page 19, they candidly address homosexual rights by demanding the following:

Reform the Family Code to recognize diverse types of families, including lesbian families, and equality of rights between heterosexual and lesbian couples, be they married or life-long companions.

Ensure the right of adoption for lesbian couples.”

  • On page 17, they demand that prostitution be recognized as a legitimate for of work:

“Recognition of Sexual Work as such, and its inclusion in the Labour Code as any other type of work.”

  • On page 19, they demand the following with regards to contraception:

“Funding to conduct reliable, timely and accurate public information campaigns on contraception.”

  • They also discuss contraception more forcefully on page 9:

“Investigate the side effects of contraceptive methods and promote the distribution of reliable ones, fostering the use of condoms as the only method that does not negatively influence the health of women and oblige the co-responsibility of men and women in sexual intercourse.”

“Access to condoms in all health care establishments.”

These folks don’t beat around the bush!

All of these positions are clearly at odds with Catholic teaching.  Development and Peace has no business funding such extreme feminists.

But the Platform doesn’t end there.  On page 11, they also demand that the government ratify the Facultative Protocol of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW).  For years, the bishops of El Salvador have been warning the government against ratifying this Protocol because it is anti-life.  The most recent plea came in May 2010 from the Archbishop of San Salvador:

“The Bishops of El Salvador have sent a letter to President Mauricio Funes and the Legislative Assembly, requesting that the CEDAW not be ratified by the Members, as it does not only threaten the newly conceived fetus, but it could also bring serious consequences to the dignity of women,” said Archbishop José Luis Escobar Alas of San Salvador, in the traditional press conference on Sunday.

Bishop Escobar Alas said that “the bishops emphasize the commitment of the Catholic Church to make every form of discrimination against women disappear worldwide, however, through proper channels and not going against the principles of family and society.

“In El Salvador, we consider the family as the primary basis of society and today, more than ever, we feel the need to strengthen youth education in values, to ensure the present and the future of our country,” added the Archbishop San Salvador, who spoke on behalf of all the bishops of the nation. (Source)

So once again we have a D&P partner crossing swords with the local bishops, with the lives of the unborn hanging in the balance.

How long will Development and Peace continue to empower the anti-life forces wreaking havoc in the Global South?


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