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president noynoy aquino’s miscommunication on the rh billl during SONA 2012 – is he anti-children? #rhbill

July 25, 2012 3 comments

yes, president aquino in his 2012 SONA did mention the rh bill but phrased it as “responsible parenthood”  (read more om this one from here: http://wp.me/pnw03-1Bm)

this was what aquino said in his SONA:

aquino:

Matibay po ang pananalig natin kay Secretary Luistro: Bago matapos ang susunod na taon, ubos na ang minana nating 66,800 na kakulangan sa silid-aralan. [Applause] Ulitin ko po, next year pa po ‘yan; 40,000 pa lang this year. Ang minana po nating 2,573,212 na backlog sa upuan, tuluyan na rin nating matutugunan bago matapos ang 2012. [Applause] Sa taon din pong ito, masisimot na rin ang 61.7 million na backlog sa textbook upang maabot na, sa wakas, ang one is to one ratio ng aklat sa mag-aaral. [Applause]

Sana nga po, ngayong paubos na ang backlog sa edukasyon, sikapin nating huwag uling magka-backlog dahil sa dami ng estudyante. Sa tingin ko po, Responsible Parenthood ang sagot dito. [Applause]

english:

I have great faith in Secretary Luistro: Before the next year ends, we will have built the 66,800 classrooms needed to fill up the shortage we inherited. The 2,573,212 backlog in chairs that we were bequeathed will be addressed before 2012 ends. This year, too, will see the eradication of the backlog of 61.7 million textbooks—and we will finally achieve the one-to-one ratio of books to students.

We are ending the backlogs in the education sector, but the potential for shortages remains as our student population continues to increase. Perhaps Responsible Parenthood can help address this.

aquino mentioned in his SONA within the context of the potential risk of an increasing number of the student population overwhelming or negating the education department’s efforts at filling up the backlog needs of students. the education sector has been plagued for decades of a lack of schools, classrooms, chairs and even books. aquino in this SONA said the education secretary is now on an aggressive move to erase the backlog. aquino was warning that population growth, the number of new entrants or children into the education system need to be kept at a lower growth rate, otherwise the education agency will not be able to erase the backlog.

this is population control. and one can argue it is being anti-children.

population control is not necessarily a bad thing. reducing birth rates is population control. families deciding to have less number of children or the married couple agreeing to a specific number of children is population control on a family level. we all do it, why shouldn’t the state encourage it?

population control becomes bad when the state dictates on its citizens to a certain number of children couples will have , or when citizens are forced into it like the way china does it which has a 1 child policy per family.

the rh bill has no such provision. number of children a couple will have is left to the couple’s discretion. the state in the rhbill will simply provide couples the means and information on how the couple can achieve their desired family size.

but there is the risk of interpreting aquino’s statement on the rh bill within the context he said it as being “anti-children”, that aquino does not want couples to have too many children that will have the effect of overwhelming the state’s efforts on the zero backlog on education.

the rh bill is not anti-children. in fact the rh bill is from the perspective of the parents, the married couple not children. the rh bill empowers the woman, the couple and the family into giving them the tools, education and service to enable them to successfully meet their desired number of children and age spacing of their children.

rh bill advocates knew what aquino meant. to a large extent the anti rh bill groups also knew what the president meant. they know it so well that they have reacted badly to the mention of the rh bill in the SONA. in fact CBCP has already launched an attack on aquino one day after the SONA.

malacanang apparently also knew what aquino said, actually what aquino failed to say and that is the reason why they felt compelled to clarify what aquino said during the SONA.

PNoy backing same RH Bill in Congress

By Willard Cheng, ABS-CBN News
Posted at 07/24/2012 4:07 PM | Updated as of 07/24/2012 10:48 PM
MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang said President Aquino was referring to the same consolidated bill on reproductive health (RH) now pending in Congress when he made a pitch for the passage of the responsible parenthood bill in his State of the Nation Address (SONA).

Deputy Presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said the draft bill submitted by the Palace has been consolidated with the version being pushed by advocates of reproductive health in Congress.

It has the title “An Act Providing for a Comprehensive Policy on Responsible Parenthood, Reproductive Health, and Population and Development, and for other purposes.”

The Palace, however, prefers to use the shorthand “Responsible Parenthood bill” in referring to it.

The measure was included in the list of the administration’s priority bills during the meeting of the LEDAC.

“Ang punto po ‘non, ang dulo po ‘non, na-consolidate na po ‘yung anim na pending (bills) in Congress sponsored by Representatives (Edcel) Lagman, (Janette) Garin, (Arlene) Bag-Ao, (Walden) Bello, (Rodolfo) Biazon, (Augusto) Syjuco, (Luz) Ilagan, and (Emmi) De Jesus… into House Bill 4244. Ang title po nito, ‘An Act Providing for a Comprehensive Policy on Responsible Parenthood, Reproductive Health, and Population and Development, and for other purposes.’ So ‘yun na po ‘yon. It has been consolidated with the pending bills,” Valte said.

“The bill submitted by the Palace took into consideration the dialogues that our officials had with members of the Church and also with members of pro-RH advocacy groups. So ‘yun na po ‘yung dulo niya. It’s House Bill 4244.” She added.

The Palace reiterated the President’s position on responsible parenthood. Valte said:

“First, the President is against abortion. This is a reiteration of the President’s position that he has, time and again, enunciated even from the campaign when he was running for president.

“Second, the President is in favor of giving couples the right to choose how best to manage their families so that in the end their welfare and that of their children are best served…

“Thirdly, the President is of the position that the state must respect each individual’s right to follow his or his conscience and religious convictions on matters and issues pertaining to the unity of the family and the sacredness of human life from conception to natural death.

“Fourth, in a situation where couples especially the poor and the disadvantaged ones are in no position to make an informed judgment, the state has the responsibility to so provide.

“And, lastly, in the range of options and information provided to couples, natural family planning and modern methods shall be presented as equally available.”

Asked if the President’s mention of the bill serves an endorsement for its passage, Valte said, “The members of Congress are free certainly to have their own interpretation of what was said by the President. But the President did mention Responsible Parenthood and that refers to the version that the Palace submitted during the LEDAC and to the one that was consolidated.”

Valte said there are no discussions yet if the Palace wants to certify the bill as “urgent.”

this incident demonstrates the importance of good communication and specificity specially on speeches of national importance by the president of the country.

 

 

RAW School 2011 Best Ad, Jovert Bantilan’s RH Now Ad – off strategy is off communication

October 14, 2011 Leave a comment

we don’t exactly know what Raw School 2011 is but the ad above has been going around twitter which is apparently a product of the Raw School 2011 competition. from what we can read from the FB page (http://on.fb.me/niFq2p) , Raw School seem to be a school for advertising students where creative directors from the ad agencies tutor or train students on advertising.

since advertising and reproductive health (RH) are two of our obsessions, we thought we should give our POV on the ad.

  • we understand the ad was probably done by a student and was probably done without a strategy and no consumer insight
  • not having a strategy and no consumer insight is the biggest and we even think  fatal weaknesses of the ad
  • the ad intentionally or unintentionally position RH as anti-sex which RH is not about. not only did the ad position RH incorrectly, the positioning of RH being anti-sex gives anti-RH advocates a good weapon against RH. RH advocates have always said RH is not about sex but about health, responsibility and open and free choice. anti-rh advocates on the other hand play up the sex component like for example the approval of the rh bill will lead to promiscuity
  • “pangmadaliang sarap” is the colloquial for sex. to some it means quickie sex. the line in the ad says people should not have sex (or quickie sex) because it leads to long term problems (“pangmatagalang  hirap”) of having a lot of children. the number of children is strongly implied in the number of spoons going after a small amount of rice in the visual
  • that leads to a much bigger and problematic  fatal error of the ad that plays exactly to the liking of anti rh advocates – that rh is anti-children. almost all filipinos reject the idea of being anti-children. that is a huge negative to pinoys who are very much into family and yes, people.  our love for children is not just based on religion it is very much a part of our culture.
  • it is possible that the creator of the ad wanted to communicate “responsible parenthood” or “responsible sex” where he wants to say that people who engage in sex should be responsible enough to know that their action can lead to pregnancy and that having too many children means parents will not have enough to support all their children. but nowhere in the ad is that directly or indirectly communicated. it is assumed, but it is not communicated.  one of the strongest principles in advertising is this – what you see is what you get. if it is not stated or included in the ad, it is not communicated. the only things the target audience get are the things you include in the ad.

the elements above are the core of what advertising is all about – the strategy and the consumer insight. fail in that and the ad is not worth anything and in this case, it even hurts the product or service you are advertising.

this ad is a WAWAM!

RAW School 2011 Best Ad, Jovert Bantilan’s RH Now Ad – off strategy is off communication

October 14, 2011 Leave a comment

we don’t exactly know what Raw School 2011 is but the ad above has been going around twitter which is apparently a product of the Raw School 2011 competition. from what we can read from the FB page (http://on.fb.me/niFq2p) , Raw School seem to be a school for advertising students where creative directors from the ad agencies tutor or train students on advertising.

since advertising and reproductive health (RH) are two of our obsessions, we thought we should give our POV on the ad.

  • we understand the ad was probably done by a student and was probably done without a strategy and no consumer insight
  • not having a strategy and no consumer insight is the biggest and we even think fatal weaknesses of the ad
  • the ad intentionally or unintentionally position RH as anti-sex which RH is not about. not only did the ad position RH incorrectly, the positioning of RH being anti-sex gives anti-RH advocates a good weapon against RH. RH advocates have always said RH is not about sex but about health, responsibility and open and free choice. anti-rh advocates on the other hand play up the sex component like for example the approval of the rh bill will lead to promiscuity
  • “pangmadaliang sarap” is the colloquial for sex. to some it means quickie sex. the line in the ad says people should not have sex (or quickie sex) because it leads to long term problems (“pangmatagalang hirap”) of having a lot of children. the number of children is strongly implied in the number of spoons going after a small amount of rice in the visual
  • that leads to a much bigger and problematic fatal error of the ad that plays exactly to the liking of anti rh advocates – that rh is anti-children. almost all filipinos reject the idea of being anti-children. that is a huge negative to pinoys who are very much into family and yes, people. our love for children is not just based on religion it is very much a part of our culture.
  • it is possible that the creator of the ad wanted to communicate “responsible parenthood” or “responsible sex” where he wants to say that people who engage in sex should be responsible enough to know that their action can lead to pregnancy and that having too many children means parents will not have enough to support all their children. but nowhere in the ad is that directly or indirectly communicated. it is assumed, but it is not communicated. one of the strongest principles in advertising is this – what you see is what you get. if it is not stated or included in the ad, it is not communicated. the only things the target audience get are the things you include in the ad.

the elements above are the core of what advertising is all about – the strategy and the consumer insight. fail in that and the ad is not worth anything and in this case, it even hurts the product or service you are advertising.

this ad is a WAWAM!

teaching of my church is to respect beliefs of other religions – Fr. Bernas SJ on the RH Bill

September 30, 2011 Leave a comment

we are reprinting this in full here.

When is family planning anti-life?

By: 

I use the phrase family planning because it is a  phrase that covers a broad spectrum of ways of limiting the number of children. It can include abstention from sexual congress intended to beget children. It can include what are called natural methods of preventing conception. It can include artificial means of preventing conception. It also includes abortion. All these contribute to the reduction and regulation of the number of children that are brought into this world.

In the current debate brought about by the introduction of the Reproductive Health bill, the question of what is anti-life comes up. It is therefore important to be able to clarify what precisely is meant by being anti-life. In the current debate, the term anti-life is often used in the most pejorative way. It is used in the sense of being against existing life. Murder, in other words.

But it can also be understood to mean not being willing or not desiring to add more human life to the already crowded population. This would be the stance of a married couple who decide to abstain from the acts that bring about life. To a certain extent this is also the stance of a young man who chooses a celibate life not because he hates children, but out of a conviction that he can accomplish better what he feels he is called to do without the burden of raising children. Definitely I would not categorize such a person as being anti-life. People like him love life so much that they take it upon themselves to contribute in some or other ways to the improvement of the quality of life of those who are already born.

We come now to contraception. Is contraception anti-life in the sense of being directed at actual life? The phrase anti-life is an active and not a passive word. The word “anti” in compound word is an active word aimed at life. Thus we must ask when life begins, because before life begins it is beyond the reach of anti-life action.

When does life begin? For me, the starting point in dealing with this very specific question is what the Constitution says. It says that the state “shall protect the life of the unborn from conception.”  What this means, in the understanding of the men and women who wrote that Constitution, is that life begins at conception, that is, upon fertilization. Before fertilization there is no life.  This is also the view of the Philippine Medical Society, and this is the view of John Paul II. John Paul II said that life is so important that we should not do anything that will endanger it. We would be taking at least a very serious risk against life if we terminate development after fertilization.

What this means is that one who practices abstention is not anti-life. The celibate who gives up procreation for a higher calling is not anti-life.  The use of contraceptive devices that only prevent fertilization is not anti-life in the sense of being an act of murder. Abortion, in the sense of expulsion of the fertilized ovum at any time after fertilization is anti-life, and is an act of murder. If life of the unborn is terminated at a stage of viability the crime is infanticide. For that reason the Penal Code and also the proposed RH bill prohibit and penalize abortion and infanticide.

I have heard it loosely said that what are being marketed as contraception devices are in fact abortive devices. This is loose talk. If there are such abortive devices being marketed, they should be identified scientifically, not by gossip, and withdrawn from the market. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has the responsibility of ensuring that no abortifacient drugs be marketed. I know of one drug which was withdrawn from the market after being proved before the FDA to be abortifacient. This was the subject of a thesis of a student of mine which she defended, as required for graduation from the Ateneo Law School, before a panel of professors.

Having said all this I must also put on my hat as a priest of the Catholic Church. I accept the teaching of the Catholic Church which prohibits not only abortion but also artificial contraception. Yet one might say that through this article I am in fact approving artificial contraception. I am not doing such a thing. Aside from being a Catholic priest in good standing, I am also a lawyer and teacher and student of Constitutional Law. What I am doing is to place all this in the context of our constitutionally mandated pluralistic society. Not all citizens of the Philippines are Catholics. Many of them therefore do not consider artificial contraception immoral or anti-life. The teaching of my Church is that I must respect the belief of other religions even if I do not agree with them. That is how Catholics and non-Catholics can live together in harmony. The alternative which, God forbid, is the restoration of the Inquisition.

is representative manny pacquaio helping or hurting the cause of anti-RH Bill proponents?

May 30, 2011 3 comments

manny pacquaio almost still fresh from the boxing ring he fought in to win over mosley in las vegas jumped into the fire called the RH Bill national debate after three steps on the NAIA.

manny pacquiao in prayer after a bout

he declared he is against the passage of the RH Bill on grounds of his religious beliefs. pacquaio is a catholic and according to him, he understood God’s words telling him to “go forth to the world and multiply, not only have two or three children”.

first off, i am glad pacquaio has time to listen to God, that is very good for him.  it is difficult for us to imagine he has the time to listen to God considering he has so many fights to attend to, many training sessions, he has his singing career, he is a congressman and has lots of money to count, more than a billion by last count (and counting). ( plus to send occassional text to his friend krista who now lives in the US. see krista in a bikini here: http://bit.ly/jGaZIx)

manny pacquaio is of course one of the most popular pinoys in the country. the whole country stops to watch his fights. and that is the attraction of pacquaio to the bishops who oppose the RH Bill. this is after all a celebrity endorser crazy country. practically all the tv ads we see in the philippines has a celebrity as endorser, including pacquiao himself who appear in a countless number of tv ads for many philippine brands.

pacquaio even had an audience with the bishops to talk about we can only guess the RH Bill.  we can only guess that the topic they had was on what pacquaio will do for the bishops in their fight to stop the passage of the RH  Bill.

we are sure the bishops were very happy about pacquaio meeting with them. until, someone in media noticed pacquaio was wearing a purple necktie. purple is the designated color chosen by the pro-RH Bill movement. the color choice for the necktie was a paux pas. we are betting pacquaio did not realize the color of his necktie will be questioned by mediamen.

faux pas appear to be the norm by which pacquaio has defined his first day into the tough world of debate on national issues. just minutes after the internet was a buzz with pacquiao’s declaration of opposition to the RH Bill, netizens posted a Philippine Star article  of some months ago where jinkee, manny’s wife admitted she is taking the pill.

“After Queenie, sabi ko kay Manny, tama na ang apat,” Jinkee volunteers. “Hindi pa ako nagpa-tali, pero nagpi-pills ako (ngayon). Nagpa-make-over ako (sa Belo) not for Manny or the people na nag-sympathize sa akin nung nangyari ‘yung intriga. I did it for myself. You should love yourself.”

read : http://www.philstar.com/article.aspx?articleid=652532

ooops, another paux pas and this one we think is a major one. his wife admitting to be taking the pill runs directly against pacquaio’s anti-RH Bill position. he loses his credibility as someone who object to the RH BIll on the basis of his religious belief.

in some way the pacquaio couple’s situation is the situation among many married couples in the philippines. for many married couples – the man and woman would have opposing views on the need for contraception. for most men it is unnecessary while most women feel it is the one thing she needs very much in her relationship with her husband.

conttraception is something that very few pinoy men understand. the pinoy male does not understand it for a few reasons : he is ignorant of what it is, he feels macho enough that he feels it is unnecessary, in the case of condoms, it reduces the sexual pleasure or what the hell does he care, he is not the one who gets pregnant.

the last part is what every pinay understand very well. in many pinoy families, concerns about the family and children is the sole responsibility of the wife.  the pinoy feels all he needs to do is earn a living and give his salary to his wife and the wife is suppose to take of everything. and “everything” includes getting pregnant.

with the pinay wife understanding very well what is involved in being pregnant, in many cases, the pinay decides to take contraceptives without the knowledge of the husband. the pinay wife thinks it is just too complicated and difficult to let the husband know about her contraceptive plans. we wonder if this the same case in the pacquaio marriage.

from this paux pas number three with his wife jinkee, he stepped into a third one. this time it is on the floor of the House Of Representatives where in his pristine suit, he interpolated the main author of the RH Bill, Representative Edcel Lagman.

pacquaio the whole time read his interpolation of  lagman. the whole thing was scripted. nothing is wrong with reading from a script but it does show pacquaio’s weakness. he may have  powerful hands to knock out men twice his size, but he did not appear to have the knowledge and the intellectual skills to even touch the face of lagman.

his questions were often times clumsy and unimpressive. he sounded lost and did not present his case against the bill in any clear manner. although these were mainly questions he posted to lagman, the point of the interpolation is not just to expose the weakness of the bill but also to state his position on the matter. he was unable to that in any measure. in fact, at one point he even gave a lengthy example of a  case of the Amish in the US that was totally unrelated to the issued of reproductive health, lagman was very kind to pacquaio that he simply stated it is unrelated and said nothing more on it.

with all these things that pacquaio has done on the RH Bill issue – pacquaio badly needs a Florence Nightingale to take care of him. he only does not need direction, he needs content and very badly.

Fr. Joaquin Bernas on #rhbill : serves the welfare of the nation and especially of poor women who cannot afford the cost of medical service

May 24, 2011 42 comments

My stand on the RH Bill

By: 

I HAVE been following the debates on the RH Bill not just in the recent House sessions but practically since its start. In the process, because of what I have said and written (where I have not joined the attack dogs against the RH Bill), I have been called a Judas by a high-ranking cleric, I am considered a heretic in a wealthy barangay where some members have urged that I should leave the Church (which is insane), and one of those who regularly hears my Mass in the Ateneo Chapel in Rockwell came to me disturbed by my position. I feel therefore that I owe some explanation to those who listen to me or read my writings.

First, let me start by saying that I adhere to the teaching of the Church on artificial contraception even if I am aware that the teaching on the subject is not considered infallible doctrine by those who know more theology than I do. Moreover, I am still considered a Catholic and Jesuit in good standing by my superiors, critics notwithstanding!

Second (very important for me as a student of the Constitution and of church-state relations), I am very much aware of the fact that we live in a pluralist society where various religious groups have differing beliefs about the morality of artificial contraception. But freedom of religion means more than just the freedom to believe. It also means the freedom to act or not to act according to what one believes. Hence, the state should not prevent people from practicing responsible parenthood according to their religious belief nor may churchmen compel President Aquino, by whatever means, to prevent people from acting according to their religious belief. As the “Compendium on the Social Teaching of the Catholic Church” says, “Because of its historical and cultural ties to a nation, a religious community might be given special recognition on the part of the State. Such recognition must in no way create discrimination within the civil or social order for other religious groups” and “Those responsible for government are required to interpret the common good of their country not only according to the guidelines of the majority but also according to the effective good of all the members of the community, including the minority.”

Third, I am dismayed by preachers telling parishioners that support for the RH Bill ipso facto is a serious sin or merits excommunication! I find this to be irresponsible.

Fourth, I have never held that the RH Bill is perfect. But if we have to have an RH law, I intend to contribute to its improvement as much as I can. Because of this, I and a number of my colleagues have offered ways of improving it and specifying areas that can be the subject of intelligent discussion. (Yes, there are intelligent people in our country.) For that purpose we jointly prepared and I published in my column what we called “talking points” on the bill.

Fifth, specifically I advocate removal of the provision on mandatory sexual education in public schools without the consent of parents. (I assume that those who send their children to Catholic schools accept the program of Catholic schools on the subject.) My reason for requiring the consent of parents is, among others, the constitutional provision which recognizes the sanctity of the human family and “the natural and primary right of parents in the rearing of the youth for civic efficiency and the development of moral character.” (Article II, Section 12)

Sixth, I am pleased that the bill reiterates the prohibition of abortion as an assault against the right to life. Abortifacient pills and devices, if there are any in the market, should be banned by the Food and Drug Administration. But whether or not there are such is a question of scientific fact of which I am no judge.

Seventh, I hold that there already is abortion any time a fertilized ovum is expelled. The Constitution commands that the life of the unborn be protected “from conception.” For me this means that sacred life begins at fertilization and not at implantation.

Eighth, it has already been pointed out that the obligation of employers with regard to the sexual and reproductive health of employees is already dealt with in the Labor Code. If the provision needs improvement or nuancing, let it be done through an examination of the Labor Code provision.

Ninth, there are many valuable points in the bill’s Declaration of Policy and Guiding Principles which can serve the welfare of the nation and especially of poor women who cannot afford the cost of medical service. There are specific provisions which give substance to these good points. They should be saved.

Tenth, I hold that public money may be spent for the promotion of reproductive health in ways that do not violate the Constitution. Public money is neither Catholic, nor Protestant, nor Muslim or what have you and may be appropriated by Congress for the public good without violating the Constitution.

Eleventh, I leave the debate on population control to sociologists.

Finally, I am happy that the CBCP has disowned the self-destructive views of some clerics.

http://opinion.inquirer.net/5340/my-stand-on-the-rh-bill

amendments to House Bill 4244 – consolidated reproductive health bill

May 16, 2011 20 comments

15 March 2011

HON. ROGELIO J. ESPINA
Chairman
Committee on Population and Family Relations
House of Representatives
Constitution Hills, Quezon City

Dear Chairman Espina:

The principal authors of House Bill 4244, the consolidated substitute bill on “The Responsible Parenthood, Reproductive Health and Population and Development Act of 2011? met yesterday to formalize voluntary amendments to the bill in order to preclude misconceptions and protracted debates. The authors have also authorized me to inform you that the following amendments be adopted as Committee amendments at the proper time:

1. Section 13 on “Roles of Local Governments in Family Planning Programs” found on lines 9-14, page 12, of the bill, which reads: “The LGUs shall ensure that poor families receive preferential access to services, commodities and programs for family planning. The role of Population Officers at municipal, city and barangay levels in the family planning effort shall be strengthened. Barangay health workers and volunteers shall be capacitated to give priority to family planning work.”

should be amended by deleting the phrase “give priority to family planning work.” found in the last sentence of the Section, and should be substituted with the phrase “help implement this Act.” This would obviate complaints that family planning is given inordinate priority.

2. Section 15 on “Mobile Health Care Service” found on page 12, lines 20-25, and page 13, lines 1-6, reading “Each Congressional District may be provided with at least one (1) Mobile Health Care Service (MHCS) in the form of a van or other means of transportation appropriate to coastal or mountainous areas. The MHCS shall deliver health care supplies and services to constituents, more particularly to the poor and needy, and shall be used to disseminate knowledge and information on reproductive health. The purchase of the MHCS may be funded from the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) of each congressional district. The operation and maintenance of the MHCS shall be operated by skilled health providers adequately equipped with a wide range of reproductive health care materials and information dissemination devices and equipment, the latter including, but not limited to, a television set for audio-visual presentations. All MHCS shall be operated by a focal city or municipality within a congressional district.”

should be amended to read as follows: “Each Congressional District may be provided with at least one (1) Mobile Health Care Service (MHCS) in the form of a van or other means of transportation appropriate to coastal or mountainous areas, the procurement and operation of which shall be funded by the National Government. The MHCS shall deliver health care supplies and services to constituents, more particularly to the poor and needy, and shall be used to disseminate knowledge and information on reproductive health. [The purchase of the MHCS may be funded from the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) of each congressional district.] The operation and maintenance of the MHCS shall be operated by skilled health providers adequately equipped with a wide range of reproductive health care materials and information dissemination devices and equipment, the latter including, but not limited to, a television set for audio-visual presentations. All MHCS shall be operated by a focal city or municipality within a congressional district.”

The reason for this amendment is to liberate the PDAF without prejudice to Members of the House who may still wish to use a portion of their PDAF for the purchase and operation of the MHCS.

3. Section 16 on “Mandatory Age-Appropriate Reproductive Health and Sexuality Education” found on page 13 from lines 7-25, and page 14 from lines 1-13, which reads: “Age-appropriate Reproductive Health and Sexuality Education shall be taught by adequately trained teachers in formal and non-formal education system starting from Grade Five up to Fourth Year High School using life skills and other approaches. The Reproductive Health and Sexuality Education shall commence at the start of the school year immediately following one (1) year from the effectivity of this Act to allow the training of concerned teachers. The Department of Education (DEPED), Commission on Higher Education (CHED), TESDA, Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Department of Health (DOH) shall formulate the Reproductive Health and Sexuality Education curriculum. Such curriculum shall be common to both public and private schools, out of school youth, and enrollees in the Alternative Learning System (ALS) based on, but. not limited to, the psychosocial and physical wellbeing, demography and reproductive health, and the legal aspects of reproductive health.

Read more…

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