Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Another Reason Why I love Nicholas Kristof

Nicholas Kristof does it again with a compelling op-ed that highlights a women's rights issue that is so often overlooked by the media - maternal mortality.

According to the World Health Organization, Sierra Leone has the highest maternal mortality in the world, and in several African countries, 1 woman in 10 ends up dying in childbirth.

It’s pretty clear that if men were dying at these rates, the United Nations Security Council would be holding urgent consultations, and a country such as this would appoint a minister of paternal mortality. Yet half-a-million women die annually from complications related to pregnancy or childbirth without attracting much interest because the victims are typically among the most voiceless people in the world: impoverished, rural, uneducated and female.

The types of pregnancy-related deaths the women Kristof writes about could be easily preventable at a very low costs but all around the world women are literally dying to become mothers. This is completely unjust and reprehensible. Women can be saved in childbirth but only if, as Kristof says, "...their lives become a priority."

Read Kristof's op-ed in full >