Philippines: Supreme Court Ruling on RH Law a Precursor to Abortion

International   |   Adam Cassandra   |   Apr 8, 2014   |   11:03AM   |   Manila, Philippines

Human Life International President Father Shenan Boquet expressed great sadness and disappointment today regarding a ruling of the Supreme Court in the Philippines that the controversial Reproductive Health (RH) Law is indeed constitutional – despite several legal challenges pointing out the law’s violation of the clear language protecting life and family in the Philippine Constitution.

The Court ruling made Tuesday, April 8, 2014, struck down several provisions within the law, but upheld many of the most objectionable parts of the law which threaten family life.

philippines2bFather Boquet said of the decision:

“The real ‘losers’ in this decision are not the pro-life groups or the Catholic Church – which have been demonized throughout the entire debate over this law – but the Filipino people and their life-loving culture. It is women and children and the basic institution of the family that will suffer because of the implementation of this law.

“The champions of the RH Law – which only passed in the first place because of the corruption of the political system and those in power – said it was necessary to control the population to curb poverty. They said it was necessary to advance ‘reproductive rights.’ And they said the Catholic Church and pro-life leaders were standing in the way of ‘progress.’ These were all deceptions used to push through a massive population control agenda that will one day lead to legalized abortion-on-demand in the Philippines.

“It breaks my heart that this is happening in such a strongly pro-life and Catholic country that has thus far been able to resist legalized abortion. Today’s Court ruling is a great setback, but we will never lose hope, and will continue to fight the battle to defend life and family in this great country.  This is an unjust law, and this ruling will not change Human Life International’s commitment to defending every human life from the moment of conception.”

The Constitution of the Philippines provides that, “The State recognizes the sanctity of family life and shall protect and strengthen the family as a basic autonomous social institution. It shall equally protect the life of the mother and the life of the unborn from conception.” But the RH Law gives the State powers and directives aimed at destroying the family unit and killing unborn life based on the misguided belief that the country’s population must be controlled to achieve economic prosperity.

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The law mandates that couples will not be issued marriage licenses without a “Certificate of Compliance” issued by the local Family Planning Office certifying that they “received adequate instructions and information on responsible parenthood” and “family planning.” The law also forces medical professionals and businesses to provide a full range of “reproductive health services” using taxpayer funds, including contraceptives, abortifacients and sterilization services, regardless of conscientious objection. And the RH Law imposes fines or imprisonment on those who engage in one or more “prohibited acts” defined in the legislation, including engaging in “disinformation about the intent or provisions” of the law. Note:  Adam Cassandra is a Communications Specialist at Human Life International.