Liberal Party (LP) President Albay 1st district Rep. Edcel Lagman has trumpeted the House committee-level approval of the proposed Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention Act.
In statement Friday, Feb. 3, Lagman said that “Young people have the right to lead healthy lives and the means to protect their health and safeguard their future. This includes access to reproductive health information, services, and commodities.”
The House Committee on Youth and Sports Development approved seven bills in connection with the proposed Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention Act on Thursday, Feb. 2. One of the bills is Lagman's very own House Bill (HB) No.79.
A substitute bill is now being prepared by the committee to integrate the similar bills and incorporate committee amendments.
If enacted, the substitute bill Filipino adolescents will soon have access to modern contraceptives without parental consent.
Lagman, an independent minority solon in the House of Representatives, is often called the "father" of the landmark Reproductive Health (RH) Law. The law is contained in Republic Act (RA) No.10354.
He underscored that affording access to modern contraceptives to adolescents is impressed with State interest because: (a) adolescent pregnancy, particularly from ages 10 to 14, has become a national social emergency; (b) adolescent pregnancy and childbirth account for the highest rate of maternal mortality; (c) early childbearing is a leading factor in intergenerational poverty; and (d) it a speculative and mistaken notion that access to contraceptives will lead to adolescent promiscuity.
The Bicolano further noted that access to contraceptives by adolescents will complement the mandatory reproductive health and sexuality education provided for in RA No. 10354, which was enacted in 2012.