Melinda Gates first made the pledge to provide 120 million women around the world with contraceptives by the year 2020 back in 2012. Unfortunately, now more than halfway to the 2020 deadline, the global partnership, called Family Planning 2020, is not yet on track to reach that goal. As of July 2016, they had provided 24 million additional women around the world with family planning services—no small feat. but Gates is determined to make up for lost time and to give women around the world the ability to take charge of their futures.
“There are still over 225 million women around the world who don’t have access to the modern contraceptives they need to make these decisions for themselves,” Gates said in a recent op-ed in National Geographic.
“Like most women I know, I have used contraceptives for many years. I knew I wanted to work both before and after becoming a mom,” Gates said. “Twenty years later, we have three children, born almost exactly three years apart. None of that happened by accident.”
Gates’s renewed commitment is likely in response to the current political climate and Trump’s executive order “reinstating a so-called global gag rule, which prohibits U.S. funding to clinics that provide abortion services overseas, reports Macaela Mackenzie.
Many women fear that access to low-cost or no-cost contraceptives will be limited, or terminated, here in the U.S. under Trump and his new Secretary of Health and Human Services, Tom Price, who is vehemently opposed to Planned Parenthood and contraception in particular.