Shift Urged in Population Policies

NEW YORK, APRIL 5, 2006 ( The Holy See has appealed to the international community to replace the failed population policies of the past with programs that focus on respect for human dignity.

Archbishop Celestino Migliore, permanent observer of the Holy See to the United Nations, made that appeal today when addressing the session of the U.N. Commission on Population and Development of the Economic and Social Council on “National Experience in Population Matters: International Integration and Development.”

“In years gone by, dire predictions as to the future composition and sustainability of the projected human global population led to radical population policies, which have in turn been responsible for different but equally grave dilemmas,” Archbishop Migliore said.

In particular, he mentioned “the serious problems brought about by failing birthrates, and the creation of imbalances between men and women in the population, with its own social consequences.”

“If the development of the world’s peoples is to be both sustainable and sane,” the prelate said, “such flawed policies will have to be replaced by truly people-centered ones.”