Brazil to Subsidize Birth Control

Cheaper pills give poor women same right to family planning, says president
By Colleen Barry,  Newser Staff
Posted May 29, 2007 7:50 AM CDT
Pope Benedict XVI celebrates mass in Aparecida.   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Just weeks after Pope Benedict XVI decried contraception as a threat to the future of Latin America on his visit to Brazil, Brazil's president announced that the government would subsidize birth control pills at private pharmacies so poor women can have "the same right that the wealthy have to plan the number of children they want."

Brazil already hands out free contraceptives at state-run pharmacies. President Luiz Silva aims to extend the largess to those who don't use free pharmacies, cutting the cost of the pill to the equivalent of 20 cents for a month's supply. Women's rights activists are cautiously optimistic. Most abortions are illegal in Brazil.