Group looks forward to RH bill’s inclusion in Sona-A A +A
Tuesday, July 17, 2012
A CIVIL society organization is looking forward to President Benigno Aquino III’s inclusion of the Reproductive Health (RH) bill in his State of the Nation Address next week.
Dr. Eden Divinagracia, executive director of the Philippine NGO Council on Population, Health and Welfare Inc. (PNGOC), said she is optimistic that Aquino will continue his support for the RH bill.
“Since including the RH bill as one of the 13 priority measures to members of the Legislative-Executive Development Advisory Council (Ledac) last August 2011, the RH bill still languishes in both houses of Congress,” Divinagracia said.
Divinagracia added she would like to remind Aquino that to provide a good future for one’s family is to create a favorable environment for every Filipino.
“To do this, PNGOC believes that having a sound and comprehensive RH policy, that is rights-based and central to the measure, is freedom of informed choice that can help alleviate the lives of every Filipino people,” Divinagracia said.
With RH bill in place, it will benefit every family as the state shall guarantee the human rights of Filipinos; it shall include the right to universal access to reproductive health information and services.
The bill shall give couples, individuals and women the right to decide freely and responsibly whether or not to have children; to determine the number, spacing and timing of their children; to make decisions concerning reproduction free of discrimination, coercion and violence; to have relevant information; and to attain the highest condition of sexual and reproductive health.
She underscored that neither the Church nor the state has the right to dictate Filipinos on which form of family planning they should use.
That choice is primarily and ultimately belongs to the couple, especially to women who bear pregnancy, childbirth, and child care.
PNGOC is a national umbrella network of 97 NGO members who believe that now is the right time for the passage of a Reproductive Health, Responsible Parenthood, and Population Development policy to recognize the needs of our women, children and families. (Leyte Samar Daily Express)