UN Critical of Uganda's Successful Abstinence Program

| 6 Comments | 1 TrackBack

Nothing like starting a Monday off with a smackdown of the UN courtesy of LifeSite:

The United Nations envoy to Africa, Canadian Stephen Lewis, is highly critical of an abstinence campaign that has downplayed the role of condoms but been hugely successful at reducing HIV transmission in Uganda. Population Researcher Institute's Joseph A. D'Agostino suggests that the success in combating AIDS in Uganda "isn't good enough for UN officials, whose love affair with condoms knows no bounds, and who are also angry with America for funding her own AIDS initiative in Africa instead of giving the money to them."

Read the rest at Marlowe's Shade

6 Comments

Aren't you being deeply, deeply dishonest? The Ugandan approach was ABC: abstinence, monogomy, condoms. The Bush admin has hacked off the BC, and imperiled a successful model. In other words, the UN envoy was being critical of, de facto, changing a proven program.

Based on their failure rates and track records in other African countries, condoms are not the most successful part of this model. And they are certainly not excluded, but neither are they absurdly touted as a first defense. And do you believe that monogamy is excluded in the Ugandan program? That's ridiculous!

Here's what happened:

1) ABC worked great

2) Congress cuts funding for foreign countries that don't stress abstinence as the primary method of controlling AIDS.

3) Uganda stops ordering sufficient numbers of condoms, thereby changing the nature of the ABC program from abstinence, monogamy, condoms to abstinence only.

4) Stephen Lewis criticizes the changes that have taken place in to one of the only successful AIDS-control programs in Africa.

Here's where the story just lies through its teeth:

...Stephen Lewis...is highly critical of an abstinence campaign that has...been hugely successful at reducing HIV transmission in Uganda.

This is just flat out incorrect. ABC has been successful; abstinence only is untested.

jpe, your statements still don't make sense.

If programs that only included condoms were a dismal failure, and on the other hand, abstinence is working in Uganda, why are you or the UN objecting to the key element that works?

And why ding the US administration for insisting on the key success factor? The administration isn't messing with success, the UN is.

The PEPFAR site clearly states that condoms are NOT excluded:

http://www.state.gov/s/gac/rl/or/29717.htm

You can take issue as to whether Ugandans are will to practice abstinence, but the fact is when practiced it works. On the other hand, so many in Africa don't know they have AIDS, and that combined with the failure rate of condoms, is a prescription for death. The numbers in Uganda bear out the superiority of what you refer to as "ABC" over condoms only and you don't make a very convincing argument that the US is pushing abstinence only. However your argument has another problem, if you were correct that PEPFAR had morphed into an abstinence only program, it is still working!

Your objection, like the UN's, seems more political than practical...

If programs that only included condoms were a dismal failure, and on the
other hand, abstinence is working in Uganda, why are you or the UN objecting
to the key element that works?

It's all three in combination that have worked. Not abstinence alone, not monogamy alone, not condoms alone. All three. The UN criticism (for whose accuracy I can't vouch - I'm just taking the UN criticism at face value) is that the US policy of suspsending funding for condoms has changed the program from ABC to A.




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