STATEMENT ON THE REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH (RH) BILLS IN CONGRESS
The Federation of Free Farmers, meeting at its national convention on 3 May 2011 in QuezonCity, reaffirms its commitment to uphold the sacredness of human life and the integrity of theFilipino family as the bedrock of Philippine society. These long-held and deeply cherishedvalues are also enshrined in the Philippine Constitution and many existing laws.Consistent with this position, the FFF registers its vehement opposition to the so-called RH(reproductive health) bills pending in both Houses of Congress. The main reasons are:1. Filipinos in general and farmers in particular consider their children as blessings to theirfamilies and as assets to society. In contrast, the RH bills seem to treat pregnancy as a diseaseand child-rearing as an affliction, both to be prevented or even eliminated.2. The massive promotion and provision of pills, implants and other artificial means of birthcontrol will likely expose our women to greater, rather than less, risks to their health. The badside-effects of these methods are medically recognized and have been validated by actualexperience, especially among rural women, who face the daily reality of extremely limitedmedical supervision and facilities in the countryside. (On the other hand, natural familyplanning - such as the Billings ovulation method - is easily affordable, protects women’s healthand the life of the unborn, enhances husband-wife interaction, and respects the religious faithand cultural sensitivities of the overwhelming majority of Filipinos.)3. The RH bills assume mistakenly that lowering population will lead to a significant drop inpoverty. Actually, history teaches that it is the opposite that holds true. Hence, the limitedresources of government are better invested in economically and socially productive programson food security, education and skills training, and improved governance, among others.4. The provisions on mandatory sexuality education will likely bring about a tectonic shift inthe youth’s mind set against our traditional and constitutionally protected values on theindividual, marriage and the family. For instance, some of the RH bills apparently will recognizethe right of adolescents to a satisfying sex life even outside of marriage, provided that the rightis exercised “responsibly”.
FEDERATION OF FREE FARMERS
41 Highland Drive, Blue Ridge, Quezon City 1109, PhilippinesTelefax: (632) 647-1451 Telephone: (632) 647-1093E-mail: email@example.com Website: www.freefarm.org