SWS: 7 out of 10 Filipinos believe RH law is constitutional

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SWS: 7 out of 10 Filipinos believe RH law is constitutional
A 2014 SWS survey shows that 72% of Filipinos favor the RH law while 77% believe it to be constitutional. The SC is set to rule on its constitutionality on April 8

TARLAC CITY, Philippines – Seventy-two percent of Filipino adults are in favor of the hotly contested Reproductive Health (RH) law, while 77% believe in the law’s constitutionality.

Thus concluded a nationwide survey on 1,200 respondents conducted on March 27 to 30 by the Social Weather Stations (SWS). The results were presented in a press conference Monday, April 7.  

The release of the survey results came on the eve of the much-awaited Supreme Court (SC) ruling on the law. SC justices are set to decide on the constitutionality of the assailed law during its en banc session on Tuesday, April 8, in Baguio City. (READ: Cordillera female doctors hope for favorable SC ruling on RH law)

The RH law – which took 13 years and 4 months to pass – funds the distribution of free contraceptives, requires government hospitals to provide RH services, and mandates public schools to teach sex education.

The landmark legislation was temporarily halted by the SC on March 19, 2013, following the filing of 14 petitions questioning its constitutionality

Among the law’s staunchest critics is the Catholic Church, which has attributed modern contraception as “anti-life” and prefers natural family planning methods for Filipino couples. 

While the issue of making artificial means of birth control more widely available remains a divisive one in certain religious circles, the survey found that 84% of the 1,200 respondents believe “the government should provide free supply or service to the poor who wish to use any family planning method.”

The Forum for Family Planning and Development Inc, the group that commissioned the survey, said the results “show no surprises” and “affirm public support” of the law. – Rappler.com

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