Sunday, 29 November -0001 18:42

UN Passes Family Resolution

Written by Rev. H.A. Bergsma
The United Nations General Assembly has passed a surprisingly strong endorsement of the traditional family and marriage. The resolution was passed by consensus at a conference in Doha, the capital of Qatar in the Persian Gulf, to mark the tenth anniversary of the International Year of the Family. It affirms among other things that: "The family is the natural and fundamental unit of society and is entitled to the widest possible protection and assistance by society and the StateÉThe right of men and women of marriageable age to marry and to found a family shall be recognized and that husband and wife should be equal partnersÉ The family has the primary responsibility for the nurturing and protection of children from infancy to adolescence." Although the resolution carries no legal clout, it nonetheless urges member states to: "Take effective measures to strengthen the stability of marriage by, among other things, encouraging the full and equal partnership of husband and wife within a committed and enduring marital relationshipÉ Reaffirm and respect the liberty of parents and, when applicable, legal guardians to choose for their children schools, other than those established by the public authorities, which conform to such minimum educational standards as may be laid down or approved by the State and to ensure the religious and moral education of their children in conformity with their own convictions." (Family Facts)

Thomas Jacobson, Focus on the Family U.S. representative to the United Nations, hails the resolution as "a change in the direction of policy at the United Nations re-embracing the family as the fundamental unit of society." As he told Family News in Focus, "It contained the words 'husband and wife,' and did not contain phrases which are code words at the UN to try to incorporate the same-sex unions into the term family." Although welcomed by numerous pro-family organizations, some nations--including Canada, New Zealand and the European Union--were unhappy with the wording of the resolution. They said it lacked previously accepted language that there is more than one family structure, including those that have same sex parents.

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