YOGYAKARTA - The youth becomes the main focus of concern on The 6th Asia Pacific Conference on Reproductive and Sexual Health and Rights (APCSRHR) forum under the theme Claiming Sexual and Reproductive Rights in Asian and Pacific Societies, which was centered at Grha Sabha Pramana UGM, 19-22 in October 2011. Moreover, approximately there are thousand participants in the event, mostly teenagers.
According to APCSRHR Chairman, Prof. Dr. Muhadjir Darwin, MPA, teenagers are a group that experiences many issues related to reproductive and sexual health problems. He exemplified the emergence of sexually transmitted diseases such as HIV/AIDS, unwanted pregnancy, abortion, violence, and alcoholic drinks.
"Teenagers and children are not free from the problem, neither, they also face problems. Unfortunately, some of the problems faced are neglected," Muhadjir said after the opening of the Youth Forum in APCSRHR series of events.
Unfortunately, Muhadjir said that though there are some problems, government policies are not real to solve them. In addition to those issues, Muhadjir Darwin also assessed the teenagers, including those in the Asia Pacific region, have so far been the object rather than subject while teenagers and children around the world have the freedom to express opinions and interests.
"Well, one of the goals of this conference is to find solution for many teenagers’ problems, and there is recognition of rights and equal opportunities to them," Muhadjir explained.
Meanwhile, the Dutch Ambassador, Marijke Wijnsroks, said that the APCSRHR forum is quite important considering the cases of sexual and reproductive health that involves young people and teenagers. Along with the development of society, values and norms are also changing, so that the role of the young people to encourage and accommodate their interests is increasingly necessary.
"We hope the teenagers especially in the Asia Pacific region can bridge the settlement of various issues concerning sexual and reproductive health and related conservative view of that," Marijke said.
At the same time, Syefa Amhed, youth representative from Bangladesh at the forum expressed the importance of three things about teens, namely curriculum that allows many people to learn sexual and reproductive health, teenagers-friendly programs, and diversity of young people.
Syefa said that related to youth reproductive health and sexual problem, actually we do not need new health clinics, but there need to be certain time for teenagers and young people to be able to share their problems.
"Of course, these young people and teenagers have unique problems, so that the availabilty of time from health services for them is much needed," Syefa said.
Permanent Representative of the Republic of Indonesia to the United Nations in New York, who is also Chairman of the Committee on Population and Development (CPD), Hasan Kleib, expected that the results of APCSRHR forum can become the subject material to the CPD meeting in April 2012 which will also discuss teenagers and young people.