Home / News / A lesson in birth control issues: Philippines sees 70 percent increase in teenage mothers over past decade
A lesson in birth control issues: Philippines sees 70 percent increase in teenage mothers over past decade

A lesson in birth control issues: Philippines sees 70 percent increase in teenage mothers over past decade

The Philippines has the highest number of teenage mothers in South East Asia. The country's population continues to grow by two million people every year, with teenage mothers accounting for 10 percent of its annual pregnancies.  Over the past decade, there has been a 70 percent increase in the number of teenage pregnancies.

Sex education is controversial in the mostly Roman Catholic country. The distribution of any means of artificial birth control is still being debated in the Senate as part of a reproductive health bill.  A bill addressing these issues was introduced 17 years ago and nothing has come of it.  Sex education and access to birth control, advocates say, is about development and transcending poverty.

Joann Cubillas was only 13 years old when she had her first child.  "I didn't know anything.  I was very young.  That's why I didn't know any better," she told Al Jazeera.  She had to put her dreams for herself aside in order to take care of the baby.  She is now 19.  Her husband is in jail.  She and her children share a small room with her mother and works part time as a waitress in order to feed her family.

Government studies in the Philippines show that the less educated, poorer women give birth earlier and have more children, which comports with findings from a Save the Children study published earlier this year.  The Save the Children statistics revealed that mothers were healthier and better off in secular countries where education, birth control and abortion are accessible.


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About D. Beeksma

One of the growing crowd of American "nones" herself, Deborah is a prolific writer who finds religion, spirituality and the impact of belief (and non-belief) on culture inspiring, fascinating and at times, disturbing. She hosts the God Discussion show and handles the site's technical work. Her education and background is in business, ecommerce and law.
  • http://www.houseofbetazed.com Mriana

    That's sad and it's such a shame that religion controls so much, including and especially women.

  • maksan

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    details about it. Thanks you

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  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tony-Bueno/100001102672232 Tony Bueno

    " shame that religion controls so much"
    What a NON – SENSE! Is the goverment that want to CONTROL so much. In the United States, England and other first world countries, teen pregancies are on the RISE, they have free condoms, pills are given in the schools and ABORTION on demand es legal, and yet continues to grows.
    Why don't we talk about the BILLIONS of dollars that trans-national companies going to make with the distribution of condoms and anti- conceptives?
    Or anybody think that is goiing to be FREE?

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