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Myth #9: Family planning through modern contraceptives is against the Philippine Constitution.
FACT: The Philippine Constitution and Philippine commitments to International Agreements allows family
planning and the use of modern methods.
 Philippine Constitution of 1987: couples have the basic human right to decide freely and responsibly the number
and spacing of their children. (Article XV, Section 3. Declaration of Principles & State Policies, Section 9, 12, 14, 15,
and 16 of the 1987 Constitution, cited in the PPHP Directional Plan (2001-2004)
 Philippine Constitution supports health and development. “The State shall…
o “…protect & promote the right to health of the people and instill health consciousness among them. (Art. II. Sec. 15)
o “…adopt an integrated & comprehensive approach to health development which shall endeavor to make essential
goods, health & other social services available to all the people at affordable cost. There shall be priority for the
needs of the underprivileged, sick, elderly, disabled, women & children. The State shall endeavor to provide free
medical care to paupers.” (Art. XIII. Sec. 11)
o “…defend the right of spouses to found a family in accordance with their religious convictions and the demands of
responsible parenthood.” (Art. XV. Sec. 3. [1])
 Under the Filipino constitution, those millions of citizens who are Protestant, Moslem or belong to other faiths
have an incontestable right to choose whatever method of family planning they wish to use and the government
has a responsibility for optimizing the health of its citizens according the best scientific evidence.
o Catholic bishops and Church leaders, if they are to truly honors the statements on religious toleration
elaborated in Vatican II, also have a moral obligation to respect the sincere beliefs of others.
 Ireland, a progressive, developed and predominantly Catholic Country, has a Constitution similar to the
Philippines, wherein, “The State acknowledges the right to life of the unborn and, with due regard to the equal
right to life of the mother, guarantees in its laws to respect, and as far as practicable, by its laws, to defend and
vindicate that right (Article 40, Sec. 3.3).
o In light of this, the Irish government has a family planning policy that funds and delivers all modern
contraceptive methods including IUDs, pills, injectables, and implants.
 As a sovereign state pursuant to its Constitution, the Philippines is a signatory of the ff. international treaties,
conferences, and conventions that enshrine reproductive health:
o United Nations declaration that Reproductive Health is a human right, and “these rights are basic right of all
couples and individuals to decide freely and responsibly the number, spacing and timing of their children
and to have the information and means to do so, and the right to attain the highest standard of sexual and
reproductive health. In addition, it also includes their right to make decisions concerning reproduction free of
discrimination, coercion and violence, as expressed in human rights documents.
o First Conference on Human Rights in 1968 accepted that “parents have a basic right to determine freely and
responsibly the number and spacing of their children and to have the information and means to do so.”
o Through the “United Nations Decade for Women” (1976-1985) that targeted improvements in women’s status,
and the third World Conference on Women (Nairobi Conference) in 1985, recognition that “women’s rights
are human rights” was spread throughout the world.
o The World Summits on Sustainable Development (Rio and Johannesburg), which advocate “Development that
meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own
needs,” balanced integration of social, economic and environmental aspects in development decision-making,
socially and environmentally sound development...”78
 The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) adopted by the Philippines and some 180 States in the 55th United
Nations General Assembly in September 2000 (the Millennium Assembly) Four of the eight development goals
were directly related to reproductive health:
o Goal 3: eliminate gender disparity in primary and secondary education preferably by 2005, and at all levels by 2015;
o Goal 4: reduce by two thirds the mortality rate among children under five;
o Goal 5: reduce by three quarters the maternal mortality ratio;
o Goal 6: halt and begin to reverse the spread of HIV/AIDS.

1987 Brundtland Report, 1992 UNCED, 2002 World Summit in Sustainable Development