This is a press statement from Democratic Socialist Women of the Philippines (DSWP).
On Valentine’s Day, a group of women advocates working among grassroots communities’ nationwide urged lawmakers to show their love to women by voting on the highly clamoured Reproductive Health (RH) bill.
“Women from different sectors all over the country have clamoured for the passage of the RH bill,” said Elizabeth Angsioco, National Chairperson of the Democratic Socialist Women of the Philippines (DSWP).
This has been shown in various surveys conducted by prestigious organizations since the bill was first filed more than ten years ago. The results in recent years have not changed – women, and men for that matter, wants a law on RH, explains Angsioco.
“Seventy three (73%) of Filipinos believe that family planning is a personal choice and a right, and that government should provide Filipinos with information and services – that is according to the latest Social Weather Stations survey,” said Angsioco.
Still, and despite all these, Congress remains evasive, laments Angsioco. “Congress leaders still do not listen to the voice of the majority of the Filipino people,” she said. “And while the delays on the RH debate continues, women, especially poor women, suffer from pregnancy and childbirth complications.”
“Sad reality is that women continue to die of deaths that could have been prevented,” Angsioco stressed.
According to Angsioco, the lack of access to RH education and services have victimized thousands of women, some are even relatives of the members of their organization. In our sympathy to these women and their families, DSWP with its partner organizations have launched a nationwide signature campaign for the RH bill.
“On Valentine’s Day and in behalf of the women in the grassroots communities, DSWP is handing over some of these signatories to our Congress representatives. We hope that this simple act will awaken the Congress leadership and that finally they listen to us – women who are the victims of the delays on the enactment of the RH bill,” Angsioco ended