Fostering linkages between family planning and social welfare
Encouraging population control within development programmes Considering relationship between population issues and quality of life Fostering development policies sensitive to population issues Reducing rate of population growth through family planning Decelerating population growth through fertility reduction Developing countries through voluntary family planning
Improve the quality of life by promoting just, coherent population and sustainable development policies; promote awareness of the social, economic and environmental implications of national and international population problems, and of the human rights aspects of family planning; increase awareness of the close relationship between population and sustainable development; support population considerations into development planning; integrate family planning as part of the whole development process; provide assistance for improvement in areas of population-related development programmes; policy evaluation and integration of demographic factors into social and economic plans.
Approximately 70% of the developing countries, with a total population close to 12,000 million people, are experiencing either high, stable or increasing fertility rates or are only at the preliminary stage of fertility transition.
The Independent Commission for Population and the Quality of Life was mandated in 1992 by several national governments and major international organizations to report in 1995. It is to reflect on population questions and to provide a vision capable of inspiring and sustaining the concerted engagement and participation of all concerned parties; to demonstrate the urgency of finding a response to the challenge posed by the world's changing population while retaining full respect for human rights; to promote policies and programmes pertaining to: improving autonomy and responsibility of both women and men in their decision on reproduction, in particular access to primary health services and family planning; integrating the concept of "quality of life" in its widest sense in a new approach to social development, and providing the most deprived populations with conditions which respect the dignity of human life; prioritizing an approach which takes into account demographic variables, socio-economic evolution and environmental changes; deepening the ethical dimension of problems inherent in the population crisis, including individual and collective rights and responsibilities, universalizing fundamental values, reduction of inequalities in and between nations and preserving the interests and potential of future generations.
It is clear that national and international organizations should redouble their efforts to assist in reducing rates of population growth in developing countries. This is important because fertility rates in most developing countries have not declined commensurately with the declines in death rates throughout the world. Governments wishing to decrease fertility levels should adopt, as recommended by the 1984 International Conference on Population in Mexico City, development policies that have been shown to reduce the level of fertility. These include, among others, improving the health and education of the people, integrating women into development processes, ensuring social equality among all groups in society and eliminating poverty. The reduction of high fertility by developing countries will also improve each country's prospects for safe motherhood and child survival.
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