Film on Philippines' RH bill shown in Finland
FINLAND - A nearly one-hour documentary on the Reproductive Health bill filmed in the Philippines by the Finnish Broadcasting company Yle raised awareness in Finland, a country where contraception and abortion are legal and supported by the government.
In the report, government representatives such as Senators Gringo Honasan and Pia Cayetano expressed their differing views while street people, church, health population workers, and a UN representative were also interviewed.
“The current population growth causes high pressure to the whole society, from schooling to housing and food and water supplies. People have also become export products, and even today, one in 10 of the Filipino works abroad,” Finnish investigative journalist Eero Ojanperä said in the introduction.
“The Catholic Church is stubborn and even holier than the Pope, it does not accept any form of birth control, even condoms,” the commentator said.
“This is the moral law of nature of which we can not compromise,” commented Bishop Gabriel Reyes in Manila, the Catholic Church representative.
The documentary film funded by a government media agency elicited varied reactions from Pinoy expats and Finns alike.
Ritchelle Moncera, a Pinay in Finland was grateful for the documentary on the Philippines shown in prime time TV slot in Finland.
“One intriguing issue,” she said.
Ai Toroba, another Pinoy commented, “Truly sad truth, the more population, the more you become poor.”
John Estallo in Finland expressed why he is against the RH bill "It would use portions of my tax and my remittance (thru Philhealth) to purchase tons of condoms and contraceptives for my poor countrymen... fiesta ang negosyo ng mga pribadong kompanya lokal man o internasyonal."
“I only hope one day there would be no need to report on so sad a situation”. Filippiinit-seura ry Riitta Vartti commented in community Facebook posts, with a link to the TV report that can be viewed online.
“When children are born at almost 2 million per year and a population of 100 million touches, the Philippines is running an intense and emotional debate on the prevention and family planning."
The synopsis mentioned. “At this rate, the Philippines is doomed to poverty, especially for the ever growing number of children per family in the slums that number to a dozen or so.
The Church wanting to keep a young and growing population as a resource is ridiculous, Senator Cayetano argued. She is shown as a proponent in pushing the family planning law to support families towards better health care services.
“As long as the poor don't have time nor strength to think of their situation the rich can continue their current lifestyle. It is also possible the rich just live so thoroughly separated from the poor that some of them cannot see what is going on, ” Filippiinit-seura ry Riitta Vartti commented in her Facebook post.
Juska Kivioja, chairperson of Filippiinit-seura, and secretary Riitta Vartti early this year tackled in an Open Forum the RHBill 2012. Arranged through a Skype connection to Quezon City on March 17, 2012, Filipino speakers and proponents of the new Reproductive Health Bill such Representative and Akbayan spokesperson Risa Hontiveros and medical doctor and Professor Guy Estrada Claudio were beamed in the webinar at Ammattiliitto Pro based in Helsinki.
Finland, known for the high status of women in society, is interested in the Philippines population and humanitarian issues. From Finland’s perspective, the Philippines is suffering from overcapacity of population.
“It is no coincidence that a milestone celebrated just in the Philippines by UN representatives a year ago was a Manila-born baby girl, who was given the honor to be the world's seventh billionth human being,” the report noted.
“Eyewitness: Church and Condom” shown on October 10, 2012 was directed by Ojanperä and produced by Hannele Valkeeniemi for Yle Ajankohtaistoiminta.