In a decision taken on Tuesday, 8 April, the Philippines’ Supreme Court declared that the law providing free contraception for the poorest people in the country "does not contravene the constitution".
This decision was made following an appeal by the Catholic Church to the highest court in the land in March 2013, in the light of the promulgation of the said law in December 2012. (Cf Synthèse de presse Gènéthique du 18 décembre 2012).
This law provides free contraceptives – condoms and the contraceptive pill – and sex education in schools. It also made it "obligatory for social workers to be trained in family planning issues and legalised post-abortion care". However, abortion is banned in the Philippines and the Constitution requires "The State to recognise the sacred nature of family life and to protect and strengthen the family unit as a fundamental, autonomous, social institution. It protects the life of a mother and her unborn child right from conception".