July 23, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A human rights organization has taken aim at the abortifacient birth control drug Depo-Provera and is demanding that Congress end all federal funding for the shot, in the United States and around the world.
A report issued by The Rebecca Project names the U.S. government, Planned Parenthood, USAID, and the Rockefeller Foundation and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, among others, as profiteers in a scheme that victimizes low-income and minority women by pushing them to take what it calls a “dangerous” drug.
“This elite institutional clique operates constructively as a de facto cartel of unethical reproductive health research funders, reproductive health advocates, and abortion rights advocates, manipulating policies to support unethical and extreme regimes of population control,” The Rebecca Project writes in its “Depo-Provera: Deadly Reproductive Violence Against Women” report.
The group expresses a “deep concern” that ”Depo Provera is an insidious...incarnation of a bygone eugenics era of forced sterilization.”
Manufactured by Pfizer, the drug was approved by the FDA in 1992 and, according to The Rebecca Project, has been disproportionately promoted to black women ever since.
The report states that this “egregious...human tragedy” is “driven by profit at any cost and a ‘population control’ ideological agenda.”
According to the Wall Street Journal’s Market Watch, the drug’s manufacturer, Pfizer, is estimated to earn $36 billion in annual sales. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) donated $560 million and various European and African governments committed to raising $2.6 billion to administer contraception, specifically Depo Provera, to women in the developing world.
The Rebecca Project has historically supported contraception and abortion but is taking issue with Depo Provera over the drug’s harmful side effects, which are listed by the FDA's warning label. Those side effects include blood clots, strokes, ectopic pregnancy, bleeding irregularities, weight gain, delayed return to fertility or permanent infertility, and loss of bone marrow density.
The Rebecca Project also objects to the drug doubling the risk of breast cancer and increasing women’s risk of contracting HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases. The shot only prevents pregnancy and does not protect against STDs.
Fr. Shenan J. Bouquet, president of Human Life International, told LifeSiteNews.com, “The facts about the harm Depo Provera does to women are simply too overwhelming to ignore.”
The long-acting contraceptive often prevents conception but may induce an abortion by preventing a fertilized embryo from implanting in the uterine wall.
“As The Rebecca Project correctly point out, it is low income and minority women who suffer most from Depo Provera,” said Fr. Bouquet, “and that suffering extends to families and communities which often are already lacking quality health care.”
Government officials who administer these programs, whether abroad or in low income neighborhoods in the United States, have “a disdain for transparency and intolerance for constitutional equal protection principles when it involves family planning policy,” the report charges.
Fr. Bouquet said the American people should demand “a complete audit of all aid sent overseas to population control organizations supplying Depo Provera and other dangerous pharmaceuticals and services in the name of ‘reproductive health.’”
“Holding congressional hearings and ending taxpayer funding of Depo Provera would be most welcome, but especially in this time of economic turmoil,” he told LifeSiteNews. "I think Americans would be shocked to learn just how much of their tax dollars go towards destroying women’s health and ending unborn lives.”