More Pinoys opting to delay marriage, having kids – POPCOM

Mayen Jaymalin - The Philippine Star
More Pinoys opting to delay marriage, having kids � POPCOM
Parents shield themselves from the sun as they wait for their children outside the Corazon Aquino Elementary School in Quezon City yesterday. Pagasa is expecting the heat index in Metro Manila to range from 39 to 43 degrees Celsius, and is warning the public of the harmful effects of extreme heat.
Jesse Bustos

MANILA, Philippines — More Filipinos are opting to delay marriage and having children, according to the Commission on Population and Development.

POPCOM executive director Lisa Grace Bersales reported that more Filipinos are postponing marriage for at least three years in order to prioritize their careers.

“They are marrying later and having children later based on our civil registration – from the previous 25 years old to 28 years,” Bersales said in an interview with “The Chiefs” aired on Cignal TV’s OneNews last Monday night.

She noted that the desire to pursue a career is one of the primary reasons why young Filipinos are delaying marriage and having children.

The POPCOM chief, however, stressed that the current trend of Filipinos choosing to marry and having children at a later age is not yet worrisome.

While the national fertility rate is declining, Bersales emphasized that the Philippines is far from having an “inverted pyramid population,” where the proportion of the elderly is higher than the younger population.

“We are actually not yet in danger of (the) inverted (pyramid) situation,” she said, as she noted that working age still accounts for 60 percent of the country’s population and 30 percent are young dependents.

She added that the elderly population is from five to eight percent of the country’s total 110-million population.

Although more Filipinos are opting to delay marriage, Bersales noted that many still consider having children and families of their own.

Citing a survey done by the National Economic and Development Authority, she said many young Filipinos still dream of having their own families – the government just needs to provide an enabling environment for young couples to have both careers and children.

POPCOM is implementing a family planning program to allow Filipino couples to choose the right size family, according to Bersales.

She said the government also recently launched a comprehensive sexuality education program, which aims for young boys and girls to dream who they want to be and delay intimacy.

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