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Holy See defends marriage, family life before UN commission on women

March 02, 2011

The Holy See’s delegation defended marriage and family life and condemned discrimination against women during a February 28 meeting of the UN Economic and Social Council’s Commission on the Status of Women.

“Values rooted in the natural law common to humanity play a key role in the proper education of the human person,” said delegation member Jane Adolphe, professor at the Ave Maria School of Law. “Primary education should focus on basic skills and it must fully respect the primary role of parents regarding their children, especially in, but not limited to, the area of human sexuality.”

“Violence and unjust discrimination against girls must never be tolerated,” she added. “For this reason all States must enact and enforce legislation to protect girls from all forms of violence and exploitation, from conception onwards, including abortion, especially sex-selective abortion, female infanticide, female genital mutilation, rape, domestic violence, incest, sexual abuse, sexual exploitation, child prostitution and child pornography, trafficking and forced migration, forced labor, and forced marriage as well as marriage under legal age.”

Adolphe said that

the true advancement of women requires that labor should be structured in such a way that women do not have to pay for their advancement by abandoning what is specific to them and at the expense of the family, in which women and mothers have an irreplaceable role. As foundational instruments of the United Nations Organization rightly point out, the family, founded on the marriage between a man and woman, is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State. For this reason, women who choose marriage must be supported, as should their husbands and their children. Civil legislation regarding marriage ought to protect the family which is necessary for the preservation and increase of the human community.


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