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The United Nations has lobbied the new Government to abandon the policy.It said banning contraceptives for unmarried women would contravene basic human rights.Young women too have said the policy must be changed."Young people should have access to contraception because young people are the most affected and have the biggest problems if they fall pregnant," 19-year-old Elfia Sarmento said.Odelia da Luz Vargas, 18, said girls also needed better sex education. The first reason is that they don't have access to information," she said."Students and young people need to get a better understanding of sexual reproductive health education."The ABC sought comment from the Timorese Government, but there was no response.This legislation, called the Representation of the People Act, was the beginning of an acceptance that democracy was for everyone.
Unmarried women and teenage girls would instead be directed to use the Billings method, where a woman uses her own monthly cycle to calculate which days are safe to have unprotected sex."The new family planning program will reduce the incidence of pregnancy and …
They will stay at home, they will take care of their children.
And they will do domestic work."The report, jointly produced by Plan and the UNFPA, identified teenage pregnancy rates as a major contributor to maternal death, infant mortality and malnutrition."Complications linked to pregnancy and childbirth comprise the second cause of death for 15 to 19-year-old girls globally," it said."In addition, the mortality rate for children born to teenage girls is much higher, with babies more likely to have a low birth weight, and facing a greater risk of malnourishment and underdevelopment."These results are also reflected in data from Timor-Leste, which shows that teenage mothers aged 15 to 19 years die nearly twice as much as mothers aged 20 to 24 years." Mr Pile said cultural attitudes in East Timor made it difficult for girls to continue their education if they fall pregnant."Even though there's a policy to have them continue schooling, frequently they're pulled out of school — either by their family or frequently the schools themselves feel they're protecting the girl by not exposing her to the school environment where she might be ostracised for falling pregnant," Mr Pile said."So the impact is both: girls are getting pregnant and it limits their ability to continue their education."Attitudes towards dating also make it difficult for girls to control their sexuality."In East Timor there is no culture of dating," he said."There is not a safe environment for adolescent boys and girls to develop friendships — platonic or romantic — so if you become friends it's frequently perceived that it has to be romantic, and pressured into a setting of making it revolve around sexuality. You see women and girls frequently talked into having sex with their partner, as in 'if you truly love me you should be able to show it'."And often it's not so much coercion, but [women] accept that because they also perceive that's their future.
“It seems incredible to us today that the right to vote was denied to half the population just because of their gender.
We are hoping that members of our community will have some exciting information that will give our event a local aspect.” The event, due to be staged in the autumn, will feature a play written by Jill and Phil Allum based on an original transcript of a meeting discussing “Votes for Women” at a meeting in Beccles in 1914.