TAKE ACTION: Urge Business Leaders to Break Their Silence on Abortion Rights

An open letter to the CEOs speaking up for equality and human rights. (Sign on here.)

Over the past two years, business leaders across the country have stepped up to successfully fight against the passage of mean-spirited laws like the so-called “religious freedom” laws that allow companies to deny service to gay people and “bathroom bills” that prohibit transgender people from using the bathroom of their choice.

Most recently in Texas, CEOs from 51 Fortune 500 companies—including all the major tech firms—publicly condemned a proposed bathroom bill, writing in a letter to the Governor that the proposed law was discriminatory and saying “Such laws are bad for our employees and bad for business.” These efforts were enormously effective, and a triumph for human rights and common human decency. Now, we urge you to expand on these efforts.

At the same time it was debating the bathroom bill, the Texas legislature debated and passed four new draconian abortion restrictions, including a ban prohibiting all private health insurance plans from covering abortion care.  Because of hostile laws, Texas now has only 21 clinics that provide abortion services, down from more than 40 just four years ago, and 82 family planning clinics across the state were forced to close after Texas refused Medicaid family planning funds.

The result? Women are literally dying. Maternal mortality in the state has risen to unprecedented levels in recent years, making these restrictions on access to comprehensive reproductive healthcare of particular concern.

It’s not just happening in Texas. In 28 states and in Congress bills to criminalize and ban all or some abortions have been introduced this year. And now the Trump administration has announced two new interim rules that would allow all employers to deny birth control coverage for their employees and their families, and allow insurance companies to deny birth control coverage to all of their enrollees. Although the Affordable Care Act mandate requiring employers and health insurance companies to provide plans that cover birth control without co-pays or deductibles still exists, the new rules create a massive loophole that can deny women the right to make their own healthcare decisions.

Dr. Daniel Grossman, professor of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive sciences at the University of California, San Francisco, put it this way: “[These laws and regulations] increase risks to women’s health and prevent employers from supporting their workers building their families, if, when and how they choose.”

Please join us in our effort to fight these discriminatory laws that are not only “bad for your employees” — all your employees, men as well as women — but are also “bad for business.” We urge you to publicly pledge that you will speak up and fight to protect this fundamental human right. And that you will guarantee all your employees are covered for the full range of reproductive health care—including abortion and contraception—with no co-pays or no deductibles, and speak with your contractors to do the same.

Our fights for justice and equality are interconnected, and we cannot move forward if we do not fight together. We need you to stand with us in our fight for women’s bodily autonomy and self-determination, and for the right of women and men to plan their families.

Say you’re #SilentNoMore.

Comments

  1. Julie Rufo says:

    If today you tell me I cannot haves an abortion, tomorrow you can tell me that I must have an abortion. That is why no one can make those decisions but individual women.

  2. It’s time that the corporate sector cared about more than profits. Our society is gravely endangered by corporate practices that undermine the health and well-being of its employees.
    #SilentNoMore

  3. The Association of American Law Schools moved its 2018 conference to Chicago from Austin, Tex., because the Texas Legislature okayed discrimination against immigrants and LGBTQ people. I applaud the Association’s decision and hope other organizations follow suit. I can’t help but wonder, however, why their concern with human rights didn’t kick in when Texas banned funding to Planned Parenthood and one out of every four family planning clinics in Texas closed. At the very least, 47,000 women lost healthcare, including thousands having to stop using their long-acting birth control. Medicaid-covered pregnancies increased by over 25% and unintended pregnancies and abortions also greatly increased. That was certainly an attack on human rights. Where’s the outrage over that?

  4. Bonnie Chalek says:

    So tired of women being treated as “last”. Enough. It also shows how corporate leaders treat women from the top down. They pay them less, blind eye to sexual harrassment and obviously don’t care if they have access to abortion and life choices. Stop the patriarchy.

  5. It’s time for the business community to stand with women the same way they have stood with others.

  6. Joyce Shain says:

    Woman make their own decisions about when to become a Mother not the government! US out of our uterus s!

  7. Joyce Shain says:

    Woman make their own decisions about when to become a Mother not the government! US out of our uteruses!

  8. April Korbel says:

    As a post-menopausal woman, I suppose people think I’m past this. Contraception, reproductive health and all that are no longer a concern for me. Right? But I had the “luxury” of spending my reproductive years in a country where I could get help and advice from Planned Parenthood as a poor college student. A country where I didn’t need an act of Congress or Warren Buffet’s bank account to get contraception. A country where abortion was still an option, even though I’m not sure I could have gone through with it, even in an emergency. These are things I took for granted until recent years and it angers me that my nieces and cousins may not have access to the same options because some narrow-minded legislators can’t stay out of the private healthcare choices.
    Women in Texas are already dying. Unwanted birth rates are up. We’re a first world country with a maternal and infant mortality rate of sub-Saharan Africa.
    If this pisses you off, speak up. Don’t let a minority destroy all the progress women have made in 100 years.

  9. It’s time to bring CORPORATE Merica, down. Stop spending your money with people that could care less than a damn about you! I don’t support Chick-fil-a, Hobby Lobby, WalMart, Home Depot…just to name a few. I’m only 1person, what if all women stopped supporting these freaks. We can make a different America, We’re Women we can do anything? Except Live! Anythine insurance can pay for Viagra, but not a pap smear!! It’s time for insurance and Corporates to go, past time!!

  10. Rockerbabe says:

    I truly believe that if our mothers and grandmothers had more steel in their spines and honesty in their wheelhouse, they would have not betrayed us on the Equal Rights Amendment. Their fear has lead to all of this misery and angst. There is almost nothing in the Constitution that signifies that women in this country are equal citizens with men. If women were equal citizens with men, we wouldn’t be the last to get assistance of any kind, our concerns about medical care, food, equal educations and harassment would be taken seriously without all of the hoha out of Hollywood. I am a tired 66 year old who feels that the status of women has dropped so much, especially since the election of the hater-in-chief, the Donald himself. The failure of so many women to not support HRC has led to this rollback of our rights and equal treatment under the law. I want and have worked for things to get better, but honestly, I am not so sure any more.

  11. Patricia Artz says:

    THE ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM: The threatened stigma of speaking out against the religions which are at the bottom of the war against women in general and abortion rights in particular. If women were to boycott – withdraw volunteerism, donations and attendance of these known opponents of women’s’ rights they would take notice. ….Please read former President and internationally recognized proponent of peace and political freedom – A MAN OF FAITH – JIMMY CARTER – speaking out in his 2014 book “A CALL TO ACTION: Women, Religion,Violence and Power. He speaks based on his personal knowledge and experiences with leaders of the major worldwide religions. An eyeopener.

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