UNFPA: Teen girls need access to RH services-A A +A
Friday, November 1, 2013
MANILA -- A United Nations report expressed alarm over statistics showing that girls under the age of 15 comprise the two million of the annual total of 7.3 million new adolescent mothers and the number could balloon to three million a year by 2030.
In the summary of the State of World Population 2013, produced by the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), the UN said the government must intervene by providing adolescent girls with opportunities "so that motherhood is not seen as their only destiny."
"This new approach must target the circumstances, conditions, norms, values and structural forces that perpetuate adolescent pregnancies on the one hand and that isolate and marginalize pregnant girls on the other. Girls need to have access to both sexual and reproductive health (RH) services and to information," the report said.
"They need to be released from the economic and social pressures that too often translate into a pregnancy, as well as the poverty, poor health and unrealized human potential that come with it," it added.
The report took note that adolescent pregnancy has serious impacts on girls’ education, health and long-term employment opportunities.
"Increasing access to age-appropriate comprehensive sexuality education -- so that it reaches boys and girls and adolescents who are in or out of school, including those from indigenous peoples and ethnic minorities -- would contribute to improved health of girls and boys, promote equitable gender relations, help prevent pregnancy, and in turn help girls remain in school and realize their full potential," the report said.
In the Philippines, Congress has passed the Reproductive Health Law which guarantees couples with universal access to methods on contraception, and maternal care.
The RH law's enactment, however, is halted with the Supreme Court-issued temporary restraining order. (Sunnex)