Birth control is legal and widely available in the Philippines for people who can afford it, particularly those living in cities. But condoms, birth control pills and other methods can be difficult to find in rural areas, and their cost puts them out of reach for the very poor.
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The measure passed on Monday would stock government health centers, including those in remote rural areas, with free or subsidized birth control options for the poor. It would require sex education in public schools and family-planning training for community health officers. The Philippines has one of the highest birthrates in Asia, but backers of the legislation, including the Aquino administration, have said repeatedly that its purpose is not to limit to population growth. Rather, they say, the bill is meant to offer poor families the same reproductive health options that wealthier people in the country enjoy.
But the Catlick church is still lying about the bill and vowing to fight on.
In the name of economic development and safe sex, the new law would require couples to have no more than two children. It would also commit the state to promoting contraceptives, abortion pills and voluntary sterilisation. In his message to Filipino Catholics, Card Tagle described as 'tragic' this morning's vote. Still, calling for unity, he said the Church would not concede defeat in its fight against the bill.
Previous DJ! blogposts about the struggle for sanity in the Philippines here and here.
With recent events in Uruguay, Northern Ireland, and Ireland, the Vatican Taliban is getting its ass kicked all over the world.