The International Organization for the Family has provided the following statement to the Permanent Representatives of all UN missions in New York.
A Time to Reflect and Protect
Statement by the International Organization for the Family
As both the 77th session of the General Assembly and the 14th World Congress of Families (https://wcfmexico.org) begin this month, we at the International Organization for the Family (sponsor of the World Congress of Families) remember powerful statements previously issued from the United Nations and World Congresses.
“The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State.” —Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 16(3)
“The widest possible protection and assistance should be accorded to the family, which is the natural and fundamental group unit of society.” —International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, Article 10(1)
“The child, for the full and harmonious development of his personality, needs love and understanding. He shall, wherever possible, grow up in the care and under the responsibility of his parents, and, in any case, in an atmosphere of affection and of moral and material security.” —Declaration of the Rights of the Child, Principle 6
“The family is the seedbed of economic skills, money habits, attitudes toward work, and the arts of financial independence. The family is a stronger agency of educational success than the school. The family is a stronger teacher of the religious imagination than the church. Political and social planning in a wise social order begins with the axiom ‘What strengthens the family strengthens society’…. The roles of a father and a mother, and of children with respect to them, is the absolutely critical center of social force.” —US Ambassador Michael J. Novak
“The attainment of every Millennium Development Goal must begin with the family. The family is the main instrument of societal transformation.” —Bangladesh Ambassador Iftekhar Ahmed Chowdhury to the General Assembly, 10th anniversary of the International Year of the Family
“We recognize the vital role of the family in attaining the internationally agreed development goals and confirm our commitment to enhance the contribution of the families in the efforts to achieve sustainable development goals by promoting family-oriented policies and prioritizing the needs and priorities of the family at the national and international levels.” —Group of Friends of the Family, United Nations
“Throughout the ages, political philosophers, social historians, and civic and religious leaders have praised the family as the foundation of the social order, the bedrock of nations, and the bastion of civilization…. The fact is that family is a universal and irreplaceable community, rooted in human nature and the basis for all societies at all times. As the cradle of life and love for each new generation, the family is the primary source of personal identity, self-esteem, and support for children. It is also the first and foremost school of life, uniquely suited to teach children integrity, character, morals, responsibility, service, and wisdom…. The state’s foremost obligation… is to respect, defend, and protect the family as an institution.” —US Representative Wade Horn to the General Assembly, 10th anniversary of the International Year of the Family
“Around the world, families provide [a] beacon of freedom and the source of help, hope and stability for individuals and nations. As one of the pillars of civilization and the bulwark of liberty, families must remain strong and we must defend them.” —Former President George W. Bush, written message to 10th World Congress of Families, Tbilisi, Georgia 2016
“For all of us, the family is the most important social institution. It is the family that shapes the human personality. The family is where the spiritual, cultural, and social experience of previous generations is shared…. In the family, a person learns the initial concepts of good and evil, the people around him, and the reason of coming to this world—the purpose of life.” —President Igor Dodon, address to 12th World Congress of Families, Chisinau, Moldova 2018
Esteemed Excellency, to help facilitate the widest possible protection for the family, we respectfully proffer the following suggestions to you and your capital.
- Issue a national proclamation on the family. For possible patterns, see our World Family Declaration (www.worldfamilydeclaration.org) and the State of Mississippi’s legislative resolution (http://billstatus.ls.state.ms.us/documents/2004/html/SC/SC0520SG.htm).
- If your constitution does not already recognize the family as society’s natural and fundamental group unit, consider adding such a provision. For examples, see similar provisions in over a hundred constitutions quoted in our World Family Declaration.
- Establish criteria to assess proposed laws, policies, and regulations in light of their potential impact on the family. As an example, see President Ronald Reagan’s executive order on the family (www.presidency.ucsb.edu/documents/executive-order-12606-the-family).
- Place the family at the center of all development plans. Despite the failure of the Sustainable Development Goals to mention the family, its central role in development is critical for success.
- Avoid agendas or agreements that would undermine the family. Some of these masquerade under the name of “rights” but actually encroach on the rights of the family, the only group unit recognized in the UDHR as having rights.
Thank you very much for your time and consideration.
International Organization for the Family