The House Committee on Youth and Sports Development resolved to reverse the alarming incidence of adolescent pregnancy in the country when it approved today the substitute bill on the “Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention Act”, principally authored by Rep. Edcel C. Lagman.
The House panel chaired by Rep. Faustino Michael Carlos III Dy, endorsed adolescents’ right to access reproductive health information and services, including the use of legal contraceptives without parental consent.
For adolescents 15 to 18 years of age, the right is absolute; and for those below 15 years old, the right is limited to those who “have already begun child bearing, who are pregnant, or who have experienced sexual assault, miscarriage, are sexually active or engaged in high-risk behavior”.
The bill also assures social protection to adolescent parents so that they can finish their education and gain skills for employment.
Lagman underscored that “adolescent pregnancy is a crisis with clearly documented health and economic consequences on young parents.”
He explained that “evidence-based prevention programs, adolescents’ access to reproductive health information and services, and non-judgmental care and support from parents, teachers, and other trusted adults will help adolescents make responsible life choices on relationships, sex, and their reproductive health.”
This bill is a sequel to the “Reproductive Health Law” which is a historic statute which Lagman also authored.
EDCEL C. LAGMAN