Infanticide (Gendercide) in China

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Each year, 1.7 million girls are "missing" in China. Where are these girls? What happens to them? Since Organizations such as Human Rights Watch, World Health Organization or Amnesty are silent, novelist Talia Carner set out to find answers. Please check her website at www.TaliaCarner.com

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Indifference or just silence?-- GENDERCIDE IN CHINA: 

Indifference or just silence? -- GENDERCIDE IN CHINA The most basic of all human rights is the right to live. © Copyright 2007 Talia Carner

Slide2: 

Written and presented by Talia Carner, author, “China Doll” Representing International Federation of Business and Professional Women (BPWI) For the NGO Committee on the Status of Women The U.N. Conference on the Status of Women, New York Presented at the U.N. on March 5th 2007

2007 U.N. Conference on the Status of Women: The Girl Child Today: 

2007 U.N. Conference on the Status of Women: The Girl Child Today “…will review research and findings of UN agencies, consider recommendations from NGOs, and most especially, listen to girls themselves.”

Girls in China who cannot speak for themselves:: 

Girls in China who cannot speak for themselves: Sources: Brian Woods’ “The Dying Rooms” Research-China.org

Slide5: 

Media and political attention is given to the issue of “missing” females in China— In connection with the potential social unrest of estimated 40 to 60 million bachelors unable to find a bride. New restrictions on foreign adoptions

Population Crisis in China: 

Population Crisis in China 22% of the world population lives on 7% of the arable land. Still growing at 1.3 billion to projected 1.7 billion in 2050

One-Child Policy: 

One-Child Policy In 1979, the Chinese government initiated a policy that permitted only one child per couple. The policy excludes minorities (9% of population) In some rural areas, families are allowed to have two children, if the first child is female, or disabled.

Results of One-Child Policy: 

Results of One-Child Policy China’s population growth curtailed: Projected 300 million were NOT born – the same as all of USA population Reported improved standard of living for smaller families China feeds its people (“One bowl of rice a day.”)

Consequences of One-Child Policy: 

Consequences of One-Child Policy 1) Second generation of single children -- with no aunts, uncles, siblings or cousins 2) A set of parents and two sets of grandparents cater to one child (“Little Emperor”) 3) Later, all 6 adults rely upon this one child to work the land and support them

One-Child Policy collides with tradition…: 

One-Child Policy collides with tradition… Generations-old tradition of highly-skewed preference for boys Girls still called "maggot in the rice" A girl will live and serve her husband's family= waste of limited resources

Total adult women missing:: 

Total adult women missing: 653,000,000 males and 612,000,000 females = 41,000,000 fewer females   Source: 2000 census People’s Republic of China

Slide12: 

Industrialized and developing nations’ (including Africa) boy-girl birth ratio is 105:100 Industrialized nations’ overall male-female ratio (adults and children) is about equal

China: Male & Female Population1981-2005: 

China: Male & Female Population 1981-2005

Myth: Scarcity of women increases their value: 

Myth: Scarcity of women increases their value Fact: Sexual violence, kidnapping and trafficking of girls and women have been increasing in China Documented characteristics of “bachelors”: violent, under-employed, poor, low social status, no family resources

Increased trafficking from Southeast Asia countries: 

Increased trafficking from Southeast Asia countries From Vietnam alone, captured trafficking doubled in 2006

1.7 million girls are “missing” in China each year: 

1.7 million girls are “missing” in China each year Unicef reports total births in 2005: 17, 310,000 China Ministry of Civil Affairs reports boy/girl birth average ratio across the nation— 120:100 = 9,520,000 boys vs. 7,789,500 girls = 1,700,000 fewer female births reported

Male- female births in China1981-2005: 

Male- female births in China 1981-2005

Where are the missing 1.7 million babies each year?: 

Where are the missing 1.7 million babies each year? Due to secrecy and control of information and access to research of a totalitarian government, there is no estimated figures of each of the following categories:

Slide19: 

Living “illegally” with their or foster families Gender-selection abortions Fatal neglect by family Outright killing Abandonment Institutionalized fatal neglect in orphanages

1) Living “illegally” with their or foster families: 

1) Living “illegally” with their or foster families “The fees of registering a foundling with the Family Planning office is several thousand yuan, dissuading the finders from keeping or registering the child.” Source: research-China.org

Slide21: 

Foundlings are kept as future servants or brides Unregistered girls do not have access to health and education services—nor later for work or residency permit. They are subject to life of illiteracy, poverty, and sexual slavery within a marriage.

2) Gender-selection abortions: 

2) Gender-selection abortions Sonograms, widely distributed to help local officials ensure that women are NOT pregnant or that their IUDs are intact, are being used for sex-selection abortions Sex-selection abortions are NOT illegal (law banning it withdrawn)

Slide23: 

Ascertaining the sex of a fetus can only be done at 18 weeks of gestation or later Frequent reports in Chinese media of sex-selection abortions at 7th, 8th or 9th month of gestation

3) Fatal neglect: 

3) Fatal neglect Due to limited family resources, girls suffer more from Deliberate malnutrition Medical neglect (Limited healthcare resources for China’s population: Overall the death rate in rural areas up to 9 times that of urban)

4) Killed outright: 

4) Killed outright With China’s improved health-care and food supply, reported overall decline in infant mortality rate – Yet… History of infanticide

Source: Gendercide Watch: 

Source: Gendercide Watch “…no overall statistics on the numbers of girls who die annually from infanticide. Calculations are clouded by the ambiguity of the data. Nonetheless, a minimum estimate would place the casualties in the hundreds of thousands.” Several Western authorities concur:

Source: 2005 U.S. State Dept report:: 

Source: 2005 U.S. State Dept report: “…the practice of infanticide continues.”

Source: World Health Organization: 

Source: World Health Organization Girls are at higher risk than boys of dying before the age of five

Source: Congressional-Executive Commission on China (2006): 

Source: Congressional-Executive Commission on China (2006) "China's population planning policy has also resulted in infanticide of female infants, though the rate at which female infants are killed or die of neglect is uncertain." Sex ratio of second birth: 152:100

Source: Unicef: 

Source: Unicef The death rate in the first year of life puts girls: at twice as high as that of boys up to 3 times more in rural than urban provinces

Source: International Family Planning Perspective (June 2004):: 

Source: International Family Planning Perspective (June 2004): Risk of death increases with birth order: Rate for second girl apx. three times that for first girls (121 vs. 44 per 1,000 births) Second girls more commonly die in the first week of birth than boys (69 vs. 29 per 1,000 live births)

(cont.): 

(cont.) Perinatal mortality rate in rural China is higher than urban areas, or in other developing countries

Killed by family members…: 

Killed by family members… Anecdotal evidence reveals that the practice is far from eradicated Methods talked about: drowning, suffocation, starvation Source: China Population and Information Research Center

Killed by the state…: 

Killed by the state… Doctors kill third children or infants born without permission from the mother's work unit Physicians or health-care workers smother babies to avoid punishment of "refusing to carry out family-planning policy."  (The risk of punishment for not killing the child greater than the risk of punishment for killing it.) 

5) Abandonment: 

5) Abandonment Female infants and disabled boys are being abandoned At birth Later, upon the birth of the desired boy When she is 3rd, 4th, or later birth order Upon remarriage of mother Sold to traffickers

Source: 2005 U.S. State Dept report: : 

Source: 2005 U.S. State Dept report: In 1994 there were apx 1.7 million abandoned children. “The number may have grown over the subsequent decade.”

Myth #1: Babies are abandoned where they can be found: 

Myth #1: Babies are abandoned where they can be found Fact: In remote rural area there may be no busy public places Punishable * Anonymity is impossible in a tight society and close dwellings * Abandonment is punishable, but killing is not

Myth # 2: Domestic adoption by parents seeking to love a child: 

Myth # 2: Domestic adoption by parents seeking to love a child Often, domestic adoptions are by couples whose one son has grown and they would like a girl However….

Fact:: 

Fact: Female infants sold to those seeking future brides for their sons Chinese officials uncovered massive baby-selling schemes. Newborns found in bags in the back of trucks on their way to be sold Poor parents of unwanted newborn girls sell babies for a little as $8 Source: LifeNews.com

Source: 2005 China Quarterly: 

Source: 2005 China Quarterly 95% of 200,000 - 400,000 abandoned children in rural areas are outside state controlled institutions They are not entitled to wu bao [social protection system]: if the parents are known, they continue to be responsible for their children, if the parents are not known, the children are not local orphans and hence not entitled to wu bao.

6) Institutionalized fatal neglect in orphanages: 

6) Institutionalized fatal neglect in orphanages Abandoned babies living in Chinese orphanages have an extremely high mortality rate (The 1995 Chinese-reported rate of 80% is estimated to have dropped) Orphanages not under Western charities suffer from extreme shortages of food, heat, hygiene, staff, medical care—and even electricity and running water

Source: Unicef: 

Source: Unicef “Chinese government’s budget for children’s health insufficient”

Source: Asia-Pacific Research Network: 

Source: Asia-Pacific Research Network China’s social protection system can cover only 5% of all of China’s welfare needs Orphanages are in remote areas, isolated from community contact—and scrutiny

Source: Deputy Director, Civil Affairs Bureau, Anhui province:: 

Source: Deputy Director, Civil Affairs Bureau, Anhui province: The central government does not allocate funding for orphan population. It leaves the responsibility to the local government. Many local governments cannot provide consistent and reliable financial aid to orphans

Source: China Ministry of Civil Affairs (2005): 

Source: China Ministry of Civil Affairs (2005) Fewer than half of China’s orphans receive [central] government subsidy. Of those received [local budget], amount per year/per child in orphanages: Large urban – Beijing, Shanghai $500 Henan, Gansu, Ningxia provinces $120 Guangxi, Guizhou & Hunan provinces $80 Seven unidentified provinces $50 Two other provinces <$30 Qinghui $12

How many orphanages are there?: 

How many orphanages are there? No recent data available The government of the People’s Republic of China’s figures in 1995 – 40,000 Under Western charities – 300-600

How many orphans per orphanage?: 

How many orphans per orphanage? Average number of abandoned babies brought to orphanages in Guang Xi – 2,000 per year Source: Xinhua news agency 2004

How many orphans are there in China?: 

How many orphans are there in China? 2005 study by Chinese Ministry of Civil Affairs and School of Social Development in Beijing: There are 573,000 orphans in China Only 69,000 of them live in orphanages

Slide49: 

The above figures only bring up the questions— What happened to the rest of the orphanages (apx. 39,000) reported in 1995—and to their populations? Where are the rest of the cumulative abandoned female infants?

What does the world do about gendercide in China?: 

What does the world do about gendercide in China? It is not covered in Human Rights Watch's report released January 2007 Acknowledged in five words in the 2005 U.S. State Department report Gets a passing nod in the World Health Organization report Not mentioned in any Amnesty International reports Not touched in Human Rights in China organization’s projects

Slide51: 

Acknowledged—but not investigated—in each of 2002-2006 reports by U.S. Congressional-Executive Commission on China --and it is not covered in the Convention of the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) publications and releases

What does the future hold?: 

What does the future hold? In 1979, upon the establishment of the one-child policy, China had almost 1.2 billion people Population growth was expected to level off in 2014 Revised estimates put the population at 1.7 billion in the year 2050

Projected continuing trend of “missing” girls – per year: 

Projected continuing trend of “missing” girls – per year

Cumulative “missing” girls to 2050: 

Cumulative “missing” girls to 2050

How many girls will go “missing” until then?: 

How many girls will go “missing” until then? Total of 133,610,000

This research was accomplished thanks to the groundwork done for the writing of the novel: 

This research was accomplished thanks to the groundwork done for the writing of the novel

Bibliography:: 

Bibliography: Additional research sources (inc. for China Population to 2050): National Population & Family Planning Commission of China in 2003 http://www.china.com.cn/people/txt/2004-05/21/content_5569757.htm http://www.stats.gov.cn/tjgb/ http://www.gjjsw.gov.cn/rkzh/rk/tjzlzg/t20070302_172620953.html http://www.cpirc.org.cn/tjsj/tjsj_cy_detail.asp?id=6740 http://www.cpirc.org.cn/tjsj/tjsj_cy_detail.asp?id=304 http://www.cpirc.org.cn/tjsj/tjsj_cy_detail.asp?id=2630 http://www.cpirc.org.cn/tjsj/tjsj_cy_detail.asp?id=4275 http://www.cpirc.org.cn/tjsj/tjsj_cy_detail.asp?id=6628 http://www.cpirc.org.cn/tjsj/tjsj_cd_detail.asp?id=4235 http://www.gjjsw.gov.cn/rkzh/rk/tjzlzg/t20070111_200559299.html