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PIA Press Release
2010/02/25

Bishops told: For heaven's sake, stop bullying Cabral

Davao City (25 February) -- Calling it as a repulsive act of interference, reproductive health advocates strongly condemn the recent statements issued by Bishops Ramon Arguelles, Arturo Bastes and Dinualdo Gutierrez calling for the resignation of Department of Health Secretary Esperanza Cabral for her strong stance in combating HIV-AIDS epidemic through condom use.

"For heaven's sake, they are calling for the resignation of Sec. Cabral just because she is doing her work as public health official who recognizes the serious problem on HIV/AIDS, laments Ramon San Pascual Executive Director of the Philippine Legislators' Committee on Population and Development Foundation, Inc. (PLCPD).

"These bishops even have the nerve to invoke the interest of churchgoers, who are humiliated by their unhealthy, anti-people behavior," he added.

On another note, Ben de Leon, President of the FORUM for Family Planning and Development, calls on Sec. Cabral to stand firm and not to allow these bishops affect her good start as DOH secretary.

De Leon said, "the job of a health secretary is to promote public health and not to mimic these self righteous and pretentious leaders of the Catholic church who have been demonizing reproductive health."

"We need more government officials like Cabral who can separate real health issues from myths and fear-mongering of certain Church leaders," San Pascual and De Leon concluded. (PIA) [top]

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