tus  on  economic  and  social  issues.18  Although  the largest social and economic NGO presence is liberal, socially conservative forces, often originating in the United States, continue to increase their presence. A review of the U.S.-based NGOs that gained UN con- sultative status over the past 35 years reveals that in the early years nearly all the registered NGOs inter- ested  in  women’s  health  issues  were  liberal  or  cen- trist. Among the hundreds of liberal and progressive women’s  NGOs  at  the  UN,  a  few  dozen  are  U.S.- based  advocacy  groups.  By  contrast,  12  NGOs opposed  to  abortion  or  compre- hensive sexuality education have gained  consultative  status  since the Cairo and Beijing UN confer- ences  in  1994.  All  of  them  are associated with the U.S. Christian Right. As Jennifer Butler has docu- mented,  battles  over  reproduc- tive  justice  at  the  UN  are  being fought  over  key  phrases  in  UN resolutions   and   policy   recom- mendations.19 For instance, when progressive  women’s  groups  suc- cessfully   replaced   “population   control”   with “reproductive   rights”  at  the  1994  International Conference   on   Population   and   Development   in Cairo,  it  signaled  a  shift  in  policy  emphasis  from family planning to women’s rights. This prompted a backlash  from  conservative  forces  that  viewed  the language   as   a   slippery   slope   towards   increased access to abortion worldwide. Conservative NGOs are  also  fighting  against  any  recognition  of  gay rights—including   blocking   LGBT   organizations’ access to the UN—and disputing the value of com- prehensive sexuality education. United  Families  International  has  published  a Pro-Family Negotiating Guide intended to challenge pro-choice and standard human rights language at every  level  of  UN  activity.  With  great  specificity, author Susan Roylance suggests specific wording to support, oppose, or modify existing UN document language as a tactic for inserting anti-abortion and “pro-family”  concepts.  For  instance,  she  includes the  following  phrases  as  those  “which  could  be interpreted   to   include   abortion:”   “reproductive health services,” “primary health care,” “safe mother- hood,” and “emergency obstetric care” and suggests aggressive lobbying for their removal.20 Evangelical Protestant groups such as Concerned  Women  for  America  and  the  Family Research Council take their cues from their better- established Roman Catholic relative at the UN, the Vatican/Holy  See.  The  Vatican  has  been,  at  least until   recently,   the   single   most influential abortion opponent at the  UN.  This  level  of  influence may  be  attributed,  at  least  in part,  to  its  special  “permanent observer”   status—held   by   no other    NGO—which    gives    it more   access   and   influence,   as well  as  to  its  longer  history  of participating  in  NGO  activities. The Vatican was able to mobilize opposition  to  the  gains  of  the 1994  Cairo  population  confer- ence    in    time    for    the    UN’s women’s conference in Beijing the  very next year. U.S.-based Catholics for a Free Choice, which mon- itors  the  Vatican’s  influence  in  opposing  reproduc- tive rights, has been leading a campaign since 1999 to challenge the Vatican’s special status, calling for a “See Change.”21 Gaining consultative status as an NGO at the UN is an involved process which, when successful, gives  an  organization  access  privileges  to  official delegations   and   activities.   When   Human   Life International (HLI), was denied official recognition at the UN (due to its attacks on Islam and hostility towards UN goals), it created the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute, or C-Fam. Headed by Austin  Ruse,  C-Fam  has  become  one  of  the  most prominent   American   anti-abortion   organizations working at the United Nations, despite its non-con- sultative status. HLI also circumvents its UN exclu- sion   by   means   of   its   anti-abortion   think   tank, UNd o i n g   R e p r o d u c t i v e   Fr e e d o m  Christian Right NGOs Target the United Nations POLITICAL RESEARCH ASSOCIATES   2006 6 Anti-choice NGOs principally target events on women’s issues, but also try to influence policies related to children, families, population, the environment, and human rights. 19“New Sheriff in Town,” 17. 20Pro-Family Negotiating Guide, 9. 21Catholics for a Free Choice, “It’s Time for a Change,” http://www.seechange.org.