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On World Contraception Day, A Call to Pass the Responsible Parenthood Bill in the Philippines

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Written by Jessica Mack for RH Reality Check. This diary is cross-posted; commenters wishing to engage directly with the author should do so at the  original post.

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Today is World Contraception Day. It’s actually a day just like any other, because it’s a day when so many women worldwide remain without access to birth control or other reproductive health services, and in which reproductive choice for all women remains an elusive goal.

Launched in 2007 by a coalition of global reproductive health partners, the mission of World Contraception Day is a world where every pregnancy is wanted. Hm. This is good, but I might suggest the following rewrite: a world where unwanted pregnancy hardly ever happens, because women have unfettered access to contraceptives.

I would then add this important follow-up, that when unwanted pregnancy doeshappen, which it inevitably will, women should have the choice and access to do something about it. Guess I shouldn’t be in the tag-line business, but this is definitely the world I want to live in.

As advocates, our emphasis shouldn’t be on making pregnancies wanted, but on making unwanted pregnancies nil. The latter places the burden on government, health systems, policymakers, and even parents, teachers, and insurance companies to ensure that individuals have the access to the tools they need. What they do with that information, that access, and those supplies is their choice.

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