World Population Day 2020! Yes, it’s a day that exists and especially addresses the cause related to the population around the world. For the past three decades, this day is celebrated on 11 July every year with an agenda to raise awareness about the population and its issues. Since the beginning of 2020, the world has acknowledged various natural calamities that resulted in crucial imbalance. Currently, the world is fighting the novel Coronavirus, which has agitated every sector of the economy.
International days are celebrated with various activities, honouring people for their humanity and achievements. UN additionally tries to embrace it as a powerful advocacy tool. The Governing Council of the United Nations Development Programme introduced it in 1989 as global population figures reached five million on 11 July 1987. The day aims to expand more awareness about growing population, causes, and significance of reproductive health.
Every year UN celebrates the day with a theme that needs to be recognised and advocated. In 2018, UN focused the celebration on ‘Family Planning is a Human Rights’ that marked the 50th anniversary of the family planning conference. Moreover, it elongated 1968, International Conference on Human Rights, which affirms family planning as a human right!
Following year 2019, UN concentrated on the reproductive health of women as a large number of pregnant women succumbed to poor health facilities. Research showed 800 women died every day while giving birth. Therefore in 2019, the UN advanced more towards learning safe reproductive health and family planning.
There are immense community issues like family planning, human rights, health rights, baby’s right, gender equality, child marriage, awareness about sexually transmitted diseases, and more. Amid COVID-19 crisis, World Population Day holds extreme importance as this pandemic has a stumbling toll on people, communities, and economies everywhere.
2020 anchors new importance as the population of women have been affected marginally. Women account for an enormous share of front-line workers who are constantly getting exposed to novel Coronavirus. This year United Nations Office of the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, UNFPA, and other UN agencies determined to develop programmes, departments, and funds to support communities.
Currently, as the global health system struggles, sexual and reproductive health services suffer, domestic violence crises, everything will be addressed by UNFPA. All the barriers and problems faced by women and girl children will be acknowledged, and be held accountable on World Population Day 2020. Keeping everything and everyone secure and healthy is the agenda of organisations working for decades.
The pandemic crisis at hand in 2020 needs no explanation, but it definitely needs care, so this year UN has decided to discuss how to put a brake on COVID-19 while safeguarding the health and rights of women and girls. It has revealed women are mostly swayed because of Coronavirus, and if lockdown continues for another six months, it may add risk and larger health disruption.
Determinants that need to be considered under UNFPA’s programme include unintended pregnancies, child marriages, gender-based violence, and greater risk of poverty. UNFPA has planned to achieve Sustainable Development Goals where Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) stays on the local plan. Obtaining SDGS by 2030 is necessary, and it has gained momentum at the Nairobi Summit.
Recent research by UNFPA highlighted that around 47 million women from low or middle-income countries possibly lack access to modern contraceptives resulting in unwanted pregnancies. Numbers further unveiled pandemic has hit marginal communities and that is what UN with other agencies will communicate on World Population Day 2020.
There are various specific themes and angles that are outlined by UNFPA.
The current world population is 7.8 billion, and it’s no secret, an increased number of people spikes the pressure on the planet’s resources. Such pressure leads to environmental concerns of water and air pollution thus commencing deforestation. Population growth and environmental changes are directly related to each other, causing global warming, deforestation, and decreasing biodiversity.
The 20th century witnessed a climate change, which recorded fourfold population growth and twelvefold greenhouse gases and CO2 emission. China is the most populated country in the world followed by India and the USA. Additionally, the UN’s 2017 world report exposed that India will surpass China by 2024.
There are various determinants responsible for such an explosion, and poverty accompanied by illiteracy as a major role. Educating about family planning and the consequences of excessive childbirth is paramount as it’s awareness could secure our future circumstances. These are the causes that led to overpopulation, but now diversely affect nations.
The global impact of population is for all to see. There are chances that it can increase pressure in economies and reduce the progress of a country. Future growth will only degrade the environment, and for that reason, UNFPA celebrates World Population Day with new initiatives and efforts to advance awareness and knowledge about overpopulation.
The world is facing an increasingly complex population, which can be paramount with demographic trends. Combine increased longevity with low birth rates in China, India, US, Russia, and other parts of the world. Initiatives are part of the development, and every year countries form strategic objectives to address issues.
United States: US is advancing department’s policy that supports women’s health, including maternal health and voluntary, informed family planning assistance, and combatting reproductive diseases. US records as the largest donor of maternal health and family planning programs that do not stabilise or control ideal family size. The policy that imparts in population status is the Program of Action of 1994 International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD).
United Arab Emirates: UAE has observed inevitable changes happening over a few decades. The technological transformation has encouraged a change in demographic and infrastructure of the country. The population of UAE has undergone extreme diversity due to the ever-growing expatriate community, national births, and better health services comprising 9.68 million in 2019. The government is providing free services, social welfare, and cash allocations while maintaining it’s high per capita income.
India: The country holds the second largest population and democracy in the world, calling for population control. The Indian PM is working with its state and central governments to implement policies for population explosion. In 2017, BJP-led state parliament in Assam adopted a two-child policy, restricting citizens to have more than two children. Further, supporting family planning, investing in a behavioural change of people, educating women about delaying pregnancy, and ensuring sufficient gaps.
UN and agencies are working persistently to curb Coronavirus and factors affected by it. The economy has shattered, death numbers have grown, domestic violence hiked, and many other sectors affected. In such adverse times, adapting to change is the purpose that supports the agenda. We urge you to mark your next move towards the development of the nation and support society to fight the crisis at hand.