Liberals commit more money to maternal health, including contraception

The federal government will contribute $76 million to the United Nations Population Fund to increase access to maternal, newborn and reproductive health services in developing countries and add $5 million for contraceptive supplies.

New funding includes $5 million for contraceptive supplies

International Development Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau announced today $81.6 million in funding for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) initiatives, including $5 million for contraceptive supplies (Adrian Wyld/Canadian Press)

The federal government will contribute $76 million to the United Nations Population Fund to increase access to maternal, newborn and reproductive health services in developing countries and add $5 million for contraceptive supplies.

Maternal and newborn health was a major initiative of the former Conservative government, although it steered clear of supporting abortion and contraception.

International Development Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau says Canada is committed to universal access to sexual and reproductive health services and rights.

The latest announcement includes a renewed commitment to support the UNFPA's contraceptive supplies initiative, a long-term program to help prevent adolescent pregnancies in Honduras.

Money is also allotted for a major midwifery initiative in South Sudan, which has one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the world.

Bibeau says the idea is to provide a more comprehensive approach to supporting the health of women in developing countries.

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