Plan Calls on Philippines Government to Pass Reproductive Health Bill

Tue, 21 Aug 2012 07:22 GMT
Source: Member // Plan International

The Reproductive Health Bill not only fulfils the rights of the child but promotes the rights of women as well.

Plan International, a humanitarian, child-centered organization working in 66 countries worldwide, strongly supports the immediate passage of the Reproductive Health (RH) Bill.

As a signatory to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Philippine government has an obligation to provide the means for the fulfilment of the rights of the child.

The RH Bill, we believe, not only fulfils the rights of the child but promotes the rights of women as well. It does so through the following measures:

1) Provide adequate training and employ health care providers and information givers to protect mothers and child during pregnancy, at birth and after delivery.

2) Train health care providers and information givers on responsible parenthood so they will be able to help individuals, couples and young people determine the needs and wants of family and children.

3) Make accessible to individuals and couples complete information and services on all medically safe and legally acceptable methods of family planning so they can come up with an informed choice, and exercise their right to determine the family size that they can properly and adequately care for.

4) Protect young people (adolescents and youth) from the adverse effects of lack of information or misinformation about reproductive processes and sexuality by training their teachers and parents on age-appropriate reproductive health and sexuality education. We would like to see that not only knowledge will be made available to young people, but RH services as well. The right to health includes reproductive health.

We reiterate that the RH bill does not:

1) Promote abortion. By training and employing health care providers and making RH information and services accessible, it helps children to survive. The RH Bill is aimed at preventing unplanned and unwanted pregnancies.

2) Support a US (or any foreign) grand design, to dominate developing countries like the Philippines by controlling their population.

3) Promote only artificial methods of family planning. The RH Bill also promotes all the modern natural family planning methods. This is to ensure that couples are free to make informed choices on family planning methods to use according to their circumstance.

By prolonging the debate and delaying the passage of the bill, there are many Filipino mothers and newborns who die everyday due to pregnancy-related complications. These complications are mostly due to unplanned pregnancies that often results in forced abortion, pregnancies occurring at an early age or old age, and pregnancies that are too closely spaced and put the health of the mother and child at risk.

We enjoin the legislators to support and champion the rights of children and mothers. Pass the RH Bill now. Its immediate passage can save precious lives.

For more information, contact Malou Sevilla, Plan’s Program Advisor on Health at +63-917-5838913 or at 02-844 2175.



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