Millennium Development Goals
The Millennium Declaration of September, 2000 and the eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) that emerged as a result of the declaration built on the framework for sexual and reproductive health rights the ICPD had put forth five years earlier. The third and fifth MDGs, to promote gender equality and empower women and to improve maternal health, respectively, embody the principles of reproductive justice through “the promotion of healthy, voluntary, and safe sexual and reproductive choices for individuals and couples, including such decisions as those on family size and timing of marriage." Indeed, the Outcome Document of the 2005 World Summit reiterates the connection between the Millennium Development Goals and their support of the many social factors that promote reproductive justice by committing the participating countries to:
“Achieving universal access to reproductive health by 2015, as set out at the International Conference on Population and Development, integrating this goal in strategies to attain the internationally agreed development goals, including those contained in the Millennium Declaration, aimed at reducing maternal mortality, improving maternal health, reducing child mortality, promoting gender equality, combating HIV/AIDS and eradicating poverty.”
Reproductive health has been related to the fulfillment of all eight Millennium Development Goals, and advocates of reproductive justice have noted that by extension, this last issue is also critical to include in strategies to meet the MDGs.
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“We should stop looking to law to provide the final answer.... Law cannot save us from ourselves.... We have to go out and try to accomplish our goals and resolve disagreements by doing what we think is right. That energy and resourcefulness, not millions of legal cubicles, is what was great about America. Let judgment and personal conviction be important again.”
—Philip K. Howard, U.S. lawyer. The Death of Common Sense: How Law Is Suffocating America, pp. 186-87, Random House (1994)
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