Tuns: Canada Must be Clear on Maternal and Child Health Policy

Canada should be more explicit in the scope of its maternal and child health initiative as politics threatened to muddle the issue with conflicting rhetoric among Canadian politicians and their debate on abortion, an analysis of The Interim said.

Author Paul Tuns noted that while the Canadian International Development Agency’s health initiative was silent on forms of birth control, the agency’s policy did not state that “other measures cannot introduced,” including abortion.

“If abortion is not part of the plan, it is incumbent upon the prime minister and his staff to ensure that the government’s priorities are represented in the program CIDA comes up with and carries out,” read the analysis.

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper had announced in January that the Canadian government would carry the agenda of maternal and child health as leader of the G-8 and G-20 this year. 

Canadian opposition leader Michael Ignattief, however, spoke on the contrary and said: “Women are entitled to the full gamut of reproductive health services and that includes termination of pregnancy and contraception.”

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    Tarra Quismundo

    Tarra Quismundo joined Devex Manila as a staff writer in October 2009 after more than six years of working as a reporter for the Philippine Daily Inquirer, a nationwide daily, for which she covered major breaking news in politics, military, police and international affairs. Tarra's Devex News coverage focuses on key Asian donors and top aid officials around the globe.