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February 16, 2005

USAID accused of human rights abuse

From BPNews:

The U.S. Agency for International Development has dismissed a report by a Harvard professor which says abstinence is the method that has worked best in dramatically reducing the AIDS epidemic in Uganda, according to Focus on the Family's Citizen magazine. USAID instead tapped a nationally known condom advocate to conduct another study that shed a more favorable light on the role of condoms in Uganda's success.

Some people in the USAID feel abstinence education is a “religious” thing, and oppose its being funded.

But Rand Stoneburner, an epidemiologist who has studied the pattern of AIDS during the past 20 years for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, told Citizen that millions of lives are at stake while USAID squabbles over whether a religious agenda is being pushed.

"Data that could save lives is being ignored -- at the cost of millions of lives," he said. "That's a great abuse of human rights because you would have saved 3 to 5 million lives if the ABC data was recognized and used years earlier."

That's pretty brave of those anti-abstinence beaurocrats to be willing to sacrifice so many lives of other people for their beliefs.

Posted by Jack Lewis at February 16, 2005 10:12 AM

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