Mission: Overpopulation threatens the quality of life for people everywhere. Population Connection is the national grassroots population organization that educates young people and advocates progressive action to stabilize world population at a level that can be sustained by Earth’s resources.
Fulfilling Population Connection’s mission requires smashing any and all barriers that prevent people from fulfilling their reproductive destinies. It’s never about “population control.” It’s always about empowering people — especially women and girls. We must ensure that people are fully able to choose their own paths — including deciding for themselves if and when they want to have children. We must address the unmet need for family planning of the 214 million women in the developing world who want to prevent pregnancy but aren’t using modern contraception.
Global population is projected to hit 8 billion around the year 2023, depending on fertility rates over the next few years. One in ten people already lives below the international poverty line of $1.90 per day.
Until everyone, everywhere, has access to affordable and appropriate contraceptives, comprehensive reproductive health care, and equal opportunity in education and employment, global environmental crises, food and water shortages, and entrenched poverty will continue unabated. We must dedicate every available resource to advocating in Washington, DC, for dramatic increases in family planning aid and to educating tomorrow’s leaders about the troubling realities of rapid population growth.
The U.S. has a shockingly high rate of unintended pregnancies—45 percent of all pregnancies are unplanned. Eight out of ten teen pregnancies are unintended. Meanwhile, low income American women face the real threat of having crucial family planning programs defunded. We work to protect women’s access to birth control and reproductive health care by standing up to Right Wing attacks on vital Title X funding for family planning providers here in the U.S.
The Teen Pregnancy Prevention Initiative and the Affordable Care Act also both contribute significant funding toward comprehensive sex education for teens. Both are under attack. We work to protect funding for programs that will reduce teen pregnancy.
UNFPA is the largest multilateral provider of family planning services in the world. It receives contributions from 180 countries and operates in over 150, including some of the most desperately impoverished nations in the world. House leaders have made it clear that ending all U.S. aid to UNFPA remains high on their agenda. UNFPA is a critical partner in the effort to expand access to contraceptives and to provide women with basic reproductive health care.
Too often, family planning providers abroad are banned from receiving essential U.S. funding due to the Global Gag Rule. This executive order “gags” family planning providers from discussing the option of abortion. It’s a backwards policy that harms women by shutting down some of the most effective family planning providers. Even when a progressive president repeals it, as Presidents Clinton and Obama did, the future specter of the Gag Rule prevents women’s health providers from expanding services. We are determined to work with our allies in Congress to legislate a permanent end to the Global Gag Rule.
The number of women in the developing world who want to avoid pregnancy but are not using modern contraception stands at an estimated 214 million. The U.S. must make a real investment in international family planning programs. $1 billion a year, or about $3 per American, will help many of these women to choose smaller families.
Inform and Organize
In March 2018, we brought 350 advocates from across the country to attend our Washington, D.C. lobby days (Capitol Hill Days) for increased access to birth control and reproductive health care, both here in the U.S. and around the world. With the help of expert speakers, we educated activists on hot button population issues and trained them to be effective constituent lobbyists.
Held annually, Capitol Hill Days is our flagship training event, bringing activists together each spring for several days intensive advocacy education and training.
Our quarterly magazine, Population Connection, highlights the connections between population, the environment, and women’s empowerment. It provides important population news, research, program developments, and legislative updates. With a circulation exceeding 100,000, the magazine is sent to our members, university libraries, teachers, journalists, and every member of Congress.
Population Education staff and volunteers conduct over 500 workshops annually, training about 11,000 educators to use our curriculum materials in their classrooms. The teachers we’ve trained reach three million students annually in grades K-12 with up-to-date lessons on our world’s population.
Each year, we host leadership training for 30 or more influential educators who want to train their fellow teachers to use Population Education materials. Our network of volunteer trainers presents two-thirds of our workshops every year, making an invaluable contribution to our program and vastly extending our reach. With our Teacher Training Network of more than 400 professional educators who volunteer their time, we can ensure that today’s students—tomorrow’s leaders—gain access to factual information about global population trends and impacts.