Melinda Gates, wife of Microsoft founder and billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates, said the international family planning and anti-poverty group founded by them, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, “has decided not to fund abortion.”
In a June 2 statement on the website of the foundation, Melinda Gates explains that she recently sat down for interviews in Toronto, Canada, and while reporters asked about the newborn and child health initiatives of the foundation, “every journalist also focused on Canada’s policy on abortion.”
“Let me tell you why this worries me,” she said.
Gates then explained that spacing “pregnancies in a safe and healthy way” is an approach that works and “saves lives,” but “the question of abortion should be dealt with separately.”
“[I]n the United States and around the world the emotional and personal debate about abortion is threatening to get in the way of the lifesaving consensus regarding basic family planning,” she said.
“I understand why there is so much emotion, but conflating these issues will slow down progress for tens of millions of women.”
She continued, “That is why when I get asked about my views on abortion, I say that, like everyone, I struggle with the issue, but I’ve decided not to engage on it publicly—and the Gates Foundation has decided not to fund abortion.”
Read more: CNN