United Nations Conference Kills Conservative Groups’ Session

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Ironic lack of Inclusivity at “Building Inclusive Communities” Conference

Salt Lake City, Utah — A UN-sponsored conference taking place this week with the purported purpose of “building inclusive and sustainable cities and communities” is anything but after last-minute cancellations to conservative groups’ session titled “The Protection of Life, Women and Girls for Safe, Sustainable Cities.” The schedule of the conference has been significantly influenced by Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski, whose office claims that the eleventh-hour cancellations were because of “controversial” subject matter included in the session and that the session must have slipped through the cracks of their approval process.

“This outright viewpoint discrimination in a UN space reserved for nongovernmental organizations to present and debate their views is unprecedented and unacceptable,” said Annie Franklin, spokesperson for the UN Family Rights Caucus. “Surely protecting unborn babies and ensuring safe deliveries is a great way to make cities and communities more inclusive, safe, and sustainable, and this topic should not be excluded from the discussions. Many countries, especially in Europe, are not having enough babies born to support their aging populations, and some governments are even paying couples to have more children. This topic is at the center of the debate on sustainability.”

“What is most troubling is how the United Nations is moving away from historically grounded precedent where, within its own Universal Declaration of Human Rights, it affirms the ‘dignity and worth of the human person,’ the ‘right to life,’ and that ‘the family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and State.” (emphasis added), says Sharon Slater, President of Family Watch International. 

In reaction to this discrimination, a number of pro-life and pro-family organizations have created an “Alternate Salt Lake City Declaration,” as the conference report will feature an outcome document that is supposed to represent the views of all participants. This alternative captures the pro-life, pro-family viewpoint on how to create safe and sustainable cities and communities and is available at UNFamilyRightsCaucus.org.

Family Watch International, one of the main organizers of the banned workshop, is encouraging people from around the world to sign the alternate declaration to make it clear that the proposed conference outcome document does not currently represent the views of many of the conference participants or even a majority of Utah residents. It clearly does not reflect the views of civil society throughout the world.


About Family Watch International

Family Watch is a U.S.-based non-religious, non-profit organization that promotes family-based solutions to world problems, and the essential role of the family in helping nations achieve sustainable development. Family Watch works at the United Nations (with consultative status) and in countries around the world to promote and strengthen the family as the fundamental unit of society. With members in over 170 countries representing diverse ethnic and cultural backgrounds, Family Watch works closely with government, religious, and community leaders, and responsible citizens worldwide to protect traditional marriage, life, parental rights, religious freedom, and the health and innocence of children. For additional information, visit: FamilyWatch.org