America is not the only country to be tangling with issues of reproductive rights of late. This past week, the Philippines made huge strides in terms of their own struggles with women’s health. The Philippines’ Congress passed a new bill that will make low-cost contraceptives available to Filipino women on the village level. 

This news is helping to establish President Benigno Aquino as a staunch supporter of democracy and social reform. Aquino, whose mother Corazon Aquino also served as president of the Philippines, is taking a hard line with the Roman Catholic church on matters of women’s health. 

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Aquino, whose defiance of church interference in government has already won over many constituents, is expected to sign this new bill into law by year’s end. Filipino citizens are overwhelmingly in favor of this action, and are hopeful that this will be the beginning of a new era for the country. 

There are still many elements of women’s health and family planning that need to be addressed in the Philippines. The question of abortion, for example, is still extremely contentious within the heavily Catholic country. But this new bill is an important milestone of progress for the Philippines, and things seem to be looking up in a big way. 

Photos via Wikipedia, Office of the President of the Philippines  

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