We call for leaving no-one behind at the Family Planning Summit

The international Family Planning Summit is taking place in London on 11 July, five years after the FP2020 targets of 120 million women newly accessing and using modern family planning methods by 2020 were agreed.

The summit is an opportunity for governments to make new commitments, or refresh existing commitments related to reaching women with family planning services and commodities. It is also a platform for civil society to hold governments to account for their meeting commitments towards the FP2020 targets.

These targets are a key milestone in ensuring women's full and equitable access to sexual and reproductive health and rights. Meeting the FP2020 targets is also essential for making progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals, including those related to HIV, gender equality, and peaceful and equitable societies.

<p>&copy; Sheikh Rajibul Islam\duckrabbit\International HIV/AIDS Alliance</p>©Sheikh Rajibul Islam\duckrabbit\International HIV/AIDS Alliance

Long way away from meeting the targets

However, we are still a long way away from reaching the FP2020 targets. Evidence shows that adolescent girls and young women, women living with HIV, and women from populations most impacted by HIV (including sex workers, women who experience intimate partner violence, and other women living in contexts of vulnerability) continue to face many barriers to accessing comprehensive sexual and reproductive health services, including family planning.

We know that low rates of contraceptive use among women and girls and vulnerability to HIV acquisition share common root causes. These include intimate partner violence and lack of sexual decision making, forced or coerced sexual debut, poverty, poor or lack of sexuality education, harmful gender norms, and cultural taboos around who should or shouldn’t be sexually active.

HIV programmes entry point for family planning services

At the summit, the Alliance will participate in a spotlight event on integration to showcase how integrated HIV and sexual and reproductive health and rights programmes can be an entry point for addressing these barriers, and reaching more women – especially young women and those from hard-to-reach populations – with family planning services, as evidenced in our 3.5-year multi-country Link Up project.

In this project, we used a range of person-centred approaches, such as peer outreach, accompaniment, community-based service delivery, and community consultation and leadership. These helped to build trust and support within the communities, and ensure that we reached the most vulnerable people within them.

We will use the summit to call on governments to leave no-one behind. We call for integrated HIV and family planning services for all, delivered competently and in a non-judgemental manner. These services should be supported by laws and policies that promote rights and enable access to integrated services, and by the promotion of comprehensive sexuality education.

Read our briefing paper Acting on HIV to achieve global family planning targets and goals.