A Philippine lawmaker is being criticized by the influential Catholic bishops for supporting a bill in congress that would promote the use of condom as a way of protection from the spread of HIV/ AIDS and other sexually-transmitted diseases.
The Roman Catholic church in the Philippines is opposing the Philippine reproductive health bill being supported by a congresswoman who is also a medical doctor. Rep. Janet Garin said the Catholic church is misleading the public by claiming that the use of condom will not guaranty users against unwanted pregnancy, transmission of AIDS/ HIV and sexually-transmitted diseases.
On the contrary, the lady physician and lawmaker said that the World Health Organization (WHO) has even recommended the use of condoms for the protection of HIV and sexually-transmitted diseases. In the Philippines, the use of condom is being supported by the government to prevent the spread of sexually-transmitted diseases.
The Department of Health had in fact spearheaded the use of condom in its recent valentine day campaign where condoms were given free to couples who bought flowers in a popular flower shop in Manila. Some government officials also claimed the use of condoms controls population growth in slum areas and in the countryside.
Dr. Esperanza Cabral, the current health department secretary is under fire from the influential Catholic bishops of the Philippines for her efforts in promoting condoms as a way of protecting the general public from HIV and other sexually-transmitted diseases. Garin said that the Roman Catholic leaders distract career officials serving the country by imposing their personal beliefs on public servants.
“The Catholic bishops must not impose their personal beliefs on our government officials and the people. They must let the Department of Health do its work, and, above all, they must immediately refrain from spreading baseless information that will impact on the health of the people,” she added.
The Roman Catholic church in the Philippines maintains that use of condoms is against the Catholic hierarchy's stand on artificial contraception. It says the government is not concerned about morality, adding that it considers humanity as a commodity.
(original article appeared @ Digital Journal