Press Release
July 22, 2013

Sen. Pia on SONA: Government efforts delayed because
of Supreme Court case on Reproductive Health

Senator Pia S. Cayetano today said the Philippines needs to catch up in the next two years to meet its commitments under the 2015 Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) of the United Nations (UN).

With only two years left before 2015, she said the country has already scored gains in achieving gender equality (MDG 3), and remains on track to halve extreme poverty (MDG 1), reduce child mortality (MDG 4) and create environmental sustainability (MDG 7).

On the other hand, the Philippines needs to step up efforts to reduce maternal mortality (MDG 5), address the rising trend in HIV/AIDS cases (MDG 6), and improve access to universal primary education (MDG 2).

"The executive department, through the President, and the legislative department have done their part in the initial implementation and passage of the Reproductive Health Law which will not only address maternal mortality, teen pregnancies, and the rising case of HIV/AIDS but will also give each couple the tools they need to plan their family."

"But with the case now pending in the Supreme Court, the government's efforts are delayed," lamented Cayetano, the RH Law's principal sponsor in the Senate and an intervenor in the RH Law case in the Supreme Court. "Many women's lives will continue to be at risk and many couples will be unable to plan their family responsibly."

"Our Constitution mandates that the government shall support 'the natural and primary right and duty of parents in the rearing of the youth for civic efficiency and the development of moral character'. Access to reproductive health care, information, and services is one way of supporting such."

"But no amount of economic growth, neither the doubling of the minimum wage, will be enough for a couple to support so many children. And that is why it is essential to equip them with the necessary means to plan their family within their means," she added.

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