RH debate highlights: Sept.28

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Senator Pia Cayetano shares the highlights of the RH debate in the senate. Here are some excerpts from her website, senatorpiacayetano.com.

“Is there gender discrimination in Philippine society?”

Debate between RH bill sponsor Sen. Pia Cayetano & Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile
Senate plenary interpellations on Senate Bill No.2865
28 September 2011

Note from the Web Administrator: As part of efforts to keep the public updated on developments in the Senate regarding the Reproductive Health (RH) bill, the official website of Sen. Pia Cayetano, in partnership with RH bill proponents, will be posting highlights and selected quotes from the plenary debates on Senate Bill No.2865, the proposed “National Reproductive Health Act of 2011.”

Now about to enter its sixth week, the RH bill debates in the Senate started in August 22 and is expected to drag on in the coming weeks, maybe even months, as senators opposed to the measure attempt to raise all sorts of issues to prolong the deliberations. Despite this and other challenges, the RH sponsors led by Senators Pia Cayetano and Miriam Defensor-Santiago have committed to see the bill through until its eventual passage by the Senate.

Highlights of interpellations on SBN 2865
28 September 2011

• On unequal treatment of women:

Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile (JPE): The bill speaks of the principle of equality before the law of women and men. Is there any unequal treatment of women and men under our legal system?

Sen. Pia S. Cayetano (SPSC): Yes. It is there to ensure that under our law, enjoyment of all our rights is protected. (Cites examples to show women do not enjoy full equality with men, such as the case of the wife of a peasant who puts in equal time and amount of work at home and to tend to their children while her husband is working in the fields. And yet her ‘work’ is not officially recognized for contributing to her family’s income and the economy.)

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JPE: But (in these examples), the ‘equalities’ are not imposed by the law, but socially, culturally…

SPSC: Yes. This is exactly why there needs to be a law. So equality will be guaranteed. Law is needed, in this case, for a woman to be able to maximize her potential and take care of her family.

Read more here.

Related story: Senate RH debates explore the extreme and the ‘unknown’

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