Free contraception to be offered to the poor in the Philippines

www.catholicherald.co.uk | 1/11/2017 | Associated Press
Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered government agencies to ensure free access to contraceptives for 6 million women who cannot obtain them, officials said on Wednesday, in a move expected to be opposed by the Church.

Economic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia said the intensified drive to make contraceptives available and ensure “zero unmet need for family planning” is important to reduce poverty. He said the government’s target is to cut the poverty rate from 21.6 per cent in 2015 to 14 or 13 per cent by the end of Duterte’s term in 2022.

Executive - Order - Duterte - Monday - Women

The executive order Duterte signed on Monday said out of the six million women with unmet needs for modern family planning, two million have been identified as poor. The two million women should have access to them by 2018, and all the rest thereafter, the order added.

It also directs government agencies to locate couples with unmet family planning needs, mobilise agencies up to the village level and partner with civil society in intensifying the drive.

Philippines - Country - Rate - Pregnancies - Decades

The Philippines is the only Asia-Pacific country where the rate of teen pregnancies rose over the last two decades, the UN Population Fund said last year. It said the slow decline of the country’s overall fertility rate may deprive the Philippines of faster economic growth expected in similar countries that have more...
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