Government must spend on birth control tools—Pulse Asia

The majority of Filipinos believe it is important for the government to allocate adequate public funding for modern methods of family planning.

A survey conducted last March by Pulse Asia showed that 88% of respondents said it was crucial that the government “allocate funds for modern family planning methods, such as pills, IUD, ligature, the condom and the vasectomy”.

Interviews were conducted across geographies and socio-economic classes, with 60% of people in the metropolitan area saying the government should fund the acquisition of contraceptive equipment, 60% of people in the Visayas region and 55% like-minded Mindanao residents.

Public sentiment on the allocation of public funds to modern methods of family planning remained virtually unchanged between February 2016 and March 2022, both at the national level and in the various survey subgroups.

In the March 2022 survey, almost all (97-99%) respondents from the Cordillera Administrative Region, Eastern Visayas (Region 8), Davao Region (Region 11) and Caraga Region (Region 13), as well as members of Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) and the Waray ethnic groups held the same conviction.

“The results of this survey confirm that our call on the government for adequate funding for modern family planning should be among the top priorities when developing the national budget. We need to ensure that the government is able to support the choices of Filipino women and couples, especially during the pandemic when many are choosing to delay childbearing due to the uncertainties of our current situation,” said Romeo Dongeto, executive director of the Philippine Legislators. ‘ Commission on Population and Development (PLCPD).

The March 2022 Pulse Asia survey also found that a large majority of Filipino adults believe that men and women are equally capable of assuming leadership roles in organizations, government agencies, and national governance.

Large majorities in all four major geographies and socio-economic classes share this view. For 84% of Filipino adults, men and women are equally capable of assuming leadership roles.

This view was confirmed across all geographies (80-86%) and classes (77-85%).

Only eight per cent disagreed, while the same rate was undecided, especially in classes E and C.

“The Filipino nation has made great strides in ensuring the equal status of women with that of men in leadership positions. Through landmark laws and programs such as the Women’s Magna Carta and the Reproductive Health Act, we have succeeded in closing gender gaps in various areas, such as education. But we know more needs to be done,” Dongeto stressed.

“Our call in this election is for Filipinos to elect leaders who will act decisively to ensure women’s access to health care, especially reproductive health and act urgently on key concerns such as pregnancy among teenage girls.

Tackling this problem and empowering young people will help us close the gaps that still exist,” he added.