Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Wednesday 22 September |
Saint of the Day: St. Maurice and the Theban Legion
home iconNews
line break icon

Guatemala initiates wide-ranging policy protecting life and family


Shutterstock | zffoto

John Burger - published on 08/04/21 - updated on 08/04/21

"We will ... protect Guatemalans as God intended," president declares.

The Central American nation of Guatemala has introduced a new policy to protect life from its earliest stages in the womb until its end.

President Alejandro Giammattei on July 25 presented the “Public Policy for the Protection of Life and the Institutionality of the Family 2021-2032,” saying it is aimed at “institutional strengthening and establishing guidelines that help to guarantee the attention to the immediate needs of protection of life from its conception and human rights of the person who is to be born, prenatal stage, early childhood, childhood, adolescence, youth, adulthood and older adulthood, thus protecting the family as the basic unit of society.” 

“We will improve social programs, health, education, the elderly and other programs to protect Guatemalans as God intended,” Giammattei said.

He stressed that “the changes that this policy will allow must be reflected in the largest inter-institutional coordination in history.” The policy will unite the efforts of 11 ministries and other institutions of the Executive, bringing together 99 programs to strengthen the family, combat sexual abuse, and fight malnutrition, among other goals. 

In 2019, as candidates, the president and vice president, Guillermo Castillo Reyes, signed the Declaration of Life and Family of the Association for Family Matters, to work for the protection of these rights and values, as well as promote government initiatives that promote them.

The Guatemalan Asociación la Familia Importa (AFI) said the policy is a “fundamental advance in the defense of life and family, as established by our Political Constitution, legislation and international treaties signed and ratified by our country.”

Guatemala’s Constitution recognizes that “the State guarantees and protects human life from its conception, as well as the integrity and security of the person.” 

AFI recognized the significance of Guatemala’s action for the region stating, “This measure is also an achievement at the regional level, since it sets a precedent to be replicated and taken as an example for other countries that defend these values.”

That’s important at a time when there’s been increasing pressure internationally for Latin American nations to liberalize their abortion laws. Argentina legalized abortion this year. Just five days after Giammattei’s announcement, the White House issued a statement of commitments to the UN Women’s Generation Equality Forum, stating that the Biden Administration is “committed to advancing sexual and reproductive health and rights in the U.S. and around the world.”

Various pro-life groups throughout Latin America celebrated Guatemala’s new policy and the message of hope it sends to the region. Pro-life advocates used the hashtag #GuatemalaPaísCeleste and the blue and white colors of the Guatemalan flag to congratulate Guatemala for its advance in the protection of human rights and invited other governments to replicate the policy.

Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...

Top 10
Domitille Farret d'Astiès
Attacked with acid as a baby, Anmol Rodriguez overcomes and inspi...
Esteban Pittaro
Argentine “Mother Teresa” was a former model and actress who embr...
Philip Kosloski
Your body is not a “shell” for your spirit
Our Lady of La Salette
Philip Kosloski
How Our Lady of La Salette can give us hope in darkness
Philip Kosloski
Pray this Psalm when you successfully recover from an illness
Philip Kosloski
An alternative Hail Mary to Our Lady of Sorrows
Cerith Gardiner
12 Habits of Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati that every young adult...
See More
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.