Divorce and Reproductive Health

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Divorce in the Philippines – Say NO to It
Divorce (or the dissolution of marriage) is the final termination of a marital union, canceling the legal duties and responsibilities of marriage and dissolving the bonds of matrimony between the parties (unlike annulment, which declares the marriage null and void). Divorce laws vary considerably around the world, but in most countries it requires the sanction of a court or other authority in a legal process. The legal process of divorce may also involve issues of alimony (spousal support), child custody, child support, distribution of property, and division of debt. Where monogamy is law, divorce allows each former partner to marry another; where polygyny is legal but polyandry is not, divorce allows the woman to marry another. Between 1971 and 2011, several countries legalized divorce, the last one being Malta in 2011. The majority Catholic Philippines is the last officially secular country that does not have civil divorce for the whole population; Muslims, however, are granted divorce rights as per their religion. Vatican City, a ecclesiastical sovereign city-state, also has no procedure for divorce. "Divorcing one's parents" is a term sometimes used to refer to emancipation of minors. Divorce in the Philippines is planning to take over Filipino values and culture. It’s all over the news, the Philippine Congress is now pushing forward the Divorce Bill right after they have put forward the Reproductive Health Bill. This is exactly what I have been worrying about. Just a couple of weeks ago, when I attended our Baptist Convention Meeting here in the Visayas, this issue was brought up. And just as what I have stated, “RH Bill can also lead to the Divorce Bill” because they have the same proponents. I know lots of Evangelical Christians are pro-RH Bill. But what they don’t know is that the proponents of RH Bill are also the proponents of Divorce Bill. And now that they almost got what they want, they are now preparing for another wave of controversial bill which will open a highway for immorality and degradation of Philippine culture and religious standards and beliefs.

MANILA, Philippines - The Philippines remains the only nation in the world that does not have a law legalizing divorce. Is the country ready for such a law? Gabriela Party Rep. Luz Ilagan believes that it is time that the country moves forward and help couples who can no longer live together. Ilagan and fellow lawmaker Emmi de Jesus have filed a House bill introducing divorce in the Philippines that is now with the House committee on revision of laws. She said they are now waiting for the committee to schedule hearings to ask the sponsors and resource persons to explain the pros and cons of the proposed legislation. House Speaker Sonny Belmonte on Wednesday said the divorce bill will be among the priority measures that will be tackled when Congress opens its 3rd regular session in late July. Belmonte said he is supporting the enactment of a divorce law in the country. Ilagan, in an interview with radio dzMM Thursday, said the country is ready for a divorce law. PH only country without divorce

"We are ready and we are the only country left now. Two years ago, we still had Malta," she said. "But when Malta had a referendum last year, na kahit iyung presidente nila was reluctant to grant divorce, noong makita niya iyung results ng kanilang referendum ay pumayag. Kaya ang Philippines na lang ang natitirang bansa na walang divorce," she said. She said Italy, where the Vatican City is located, allows divorce. The Vatican, which is technically a sovereign city-state, does not allow divorce. Current Philippine laws only allow annulment of marriage -- a long, expensive, and painful legal process for estranged couples who no longer want to live together as man and wife. Not Vegas-style divorce

Ilagan said the conservatives in the Philippines should not compare the proposed legislation with lax laws on divorce in other...
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