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REACTION PAPER

ON

SS102

(PHILIPPINE HISTORY)

REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH

BILL

Submitted by:

Natanawan, Remelyn L.

BSAM- 3102

REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH BILL

The Reproductive Health Bill, informally known as the RH Bill, are proposed laws in the Republic of the Philippines aiming to guarantee universal access to methods of contraception, abortion, fertility control, sexual education, and maternal care.

There are presently two bills with the same intended goals:

* House Bill # 4244 ─ an Act Providing for a Comprehensive Policy on Responsible Parenthood, Reproductive Health, and Population and Development, and For Other Purposes

* Senate Bill # 2378 ─ an Act Providing For a National Policy on Reproductive Health and Population and Development

While there is general agreement about its provisions on maternal and child health, there is great debate on its key proposal that the Philippine government and the private sector will fund and undertake widespread distribution of family planning devices such as condoms, birth control pills (BCPs) and IUDs, as the government continues to disseminate information on their use through all health care centers.

The bill is highly divisive, with experts, academics, religious institutions, and major political figures supporting and opposing it, often criticizing the government and each other in the process. Debates and rallies proposing and opposing the bills, with tens of thousands of opposition particularly those endorsed by the bishops of the Roman Catholic Church and various other conservative groups, have been happening nationwide.

BACKGROUND

Stated purpose

One of the main concerns of the bill, according to the Explanatory Note, is that the population of the Philippines makes it “the 12th most populous nation in the world today”, that the Filipino women’s fertility rate is “at the upper bracket of 206 countries.” It states that studies and surveys “show that the Filipinos are responsive to having...