Michigan Women Now Need Rape Insurance

MICH SENATORThe Michigan state legislature recently passed a law banning health insurance markets from offering coverage for abortions. Instead, women seeking the procedure will be required to purchase a separate insurance rider for abortion procedures.

Under the new restrictions, which will take effect three months after the legislature adjourns for the year, women would have to predict when they will have an unplanned pregnancy, as abortion coverage must be purchased before becoming pregnant. Because the law does not allow exceptions for rape or incest, state Sen. Gretchen Whitmer and other opponents of the law have called it “rape insurance.”

Adding yet another hurdle to health-care access, the law does not guarantee that abortion insurance riders will even be available for separate purchase. According to officials at Planned Parenthood and the Guttmacher Institute, the markets for abortion riders don’t exist yet.

During debate over the bill, Sen. Whitmer, the Democratic Minority Leader, told a heart-wrenching story of being raped decades ago and never being able to tell many of her close friends. She talked about the tough discussions women who seek abortions would have to make if they did not have the insurance to cover the procedure.

Even some conservative Michigan officials oppose the law. Last year, anti-choice Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder vetoed the abortion insurance rider bill because it neglected to leave exceptions for rape or incest. Prior to that, former governor John Engler, another Republican, also vetoed the bill. However, because abortion opponents collected 315,477 petition signatures, they were able to sidestep Snyder’s veto.

Those signatures do not accurately reflect Michigan voters, however, as they represent about 3 percent to 4 percent of Michigan voters. Said Whitmer during her speech,

Make no mistake, this is anything but a citizens’ initiative. It’s a special interest group’s perverted dream come true.


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Shae Collins is the creator of A Womyn’s Worth, a social commentary blog that addresses interests and concerns of black women. Follow this current Ms. intern on Twitter.


  1. Lillian Pope says:

    Your joking right. Thank God I don’t live in Michigan

  2. This issue needs to be left alone. How dare they take away a woman’s right. Good lord we no longer have a right to our own body. So if a woman gets raped, or the baby has some kind of genetic problems and she wants an abortion, she can’t have one now. Then who is going to pay for her to have an unwanted child? Who pays for all the medical bills? The woman shouldn’t have to pay them, the anti abortion group should have to pay it. Also who pays the family if the woman dies in child birth because she is forced to have a child and there are complications. I think this is going to cause more babies to be abandoned and disposed of. The news is filled with these horrible stories already, now it is going to get worse. I can also see “back room” abortion “clinics” opening up to fill the need this ruling is going to cause. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t believe abortion should be used lightly. Nor should it be totally banned.

  3. As a 17 year old girl I can say its a good thing I don’t live in Michigan. I don’t think I have heard anything this ridiculous in my life. If my mother ever sat me down when having “the sex talk “with me and then mentioned I need some special insurance just incase a man decides to violate my body I would be horrified. Thats not a good talk to have ever. Granted abortion isn’t a happy subject either but I think a person should be able to have the decision with what to do with their own body. What happens if the girl that gets raped gets depressed and drinks and takes multiple narcotics and illegal drugs? Then whose really being punished? The answer the EVERYONE! First lets start with the girl shall we? not only have you denied her the right to her body your forcing her to carry a child she doesn’t want. You could also be potentially ruining her future if said girl is still pursuing her education and those odds are quite high 1-4 women are raped or experience attempted rape by the time they reach college. Now for the real victim the child. The child if the mother really just doesn’t want them and can’t abort them will adopt them out. Now say the mother did not get proper pre-natal care or took harmful drugs (legal or not) now your looking at a potentially unhealthy or deformed baby. Im not a pessimist do not get me wrong here I am a realist though. Realistically unhealthy/deformed babies are deemed un-adoptable by the system. So the kid gets to live with multiple deformities and if no one adopts the kid they feel unloved which is a pretty miserable existence in my opinion. Now for the Final victim the united states government. They will have to pay for that child that no one wanted its whole life. My point? This is an ugly cycle than can all be avoided if women could just have the rights to their own body no questions asked and no judgements passed.

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