Religious and anti-choice advocates in the Philippines are increasing their efforts to stop any headway on the reproductive health bill working its way through the legislative process, now introducing their own "Protection of the Unborn Child" bill in order to make contraceptive measures like the Pill illegal.
At a joint hearing of the Senate committees on youth, women and family relations, and constitutional amendments, Atty. Jo Aurea Imbong, executive secretary of the CBCP’s legal office, said the CBCP favored the passage of the proposed measure contained in Senate Bills 2407, 2584 and 2635 because it acknowledged and asserted the fundamental and inalienable right to life.
The bills prohibit the use of “abortifacients, abortive acts and practices that induce abortion.”
“The unborn offspring of conception is human life –whether wanted o unwanted, unplanned or mistimed. Senate Bills 2497, 2584 and 2635 acknowledge and assert this fundamental and alienable right to life. The Catholic Bishops’ Conference favors their passage into law,” Imbong told the committees.
The reproductive health bill being considered by the legislature is hoped to address the increasing maternal mortality rate the country has been experiencing, often blamed on women having babies too closely spaced due to lack of access to birth control. The president of the country has been giving his support to the reproductive health bill as a bill of responsible health policy.