CHURCH STATEMENT TO SET COUNTRY BACK FROM MEETING MDG REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH TARGETS

Gabriela Women’s Party Representative Liza Maza today expressed fears that the statement issued by Church leaders seeking to deny communion to authors of legislative measures on reproductive health care could bring the delivery of services and education on women’s healthcare and protection to the dark ages and set the country back from meeting Millennium Development Goal targets.

“The statement virtually condemns those who seek to give education and reproductive healthcare alternatives to women in a country where about 10 to 12 women die every day due to pregnancy-related causes. Besides, none of the bills pending in the House of Representatives endorse abortion as a method of contraception,” said Maza.

“In 2006, the national maternal mortality rate was 162. This is a far cry from the Millennium Development Goal target of 52.3. The MDG targets also state that all births should be attended to by skilled health workers by 2015.”

The Gabriela solon further said that “We need to educate women and their families and we need to make reproductive healthcare options available to make this country safer for women and children. Studies worldwide show that deaths and complications resulting from unsafe pregnancies as well as self-induced abortions remain high in countries where contraception and abortion is highly restricted or illegal.”

Maza also urged Church leaders to consider the case of Carmen, Bohol a municipality in the Visayas that has implemented a reproductive healthcare policy. This policy has resulted to virtually no maternal death in Carmen in the last five years except for one case in 2006. #

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