Despite enormous pressure from the National Conference of Catholic Bishops, the Obama Administration recently decided not to broaden the religious exemption for contraceptive coverage under the Preventive Care package of the Affordable Care Act. This demand for additional exemptions would have denied millions of Americans contraceptive coverage, including students, teachers, nurses, social workers, and other staff (and their families) at religiously-connected or affiliated schools, universities, and hospitals, as well as agencies and institutions like Catholic Charities.
The Catholic Bishops are now leading a backlash against this decision, and women are speaking out. Because of the Affordable Care Act, millions of women who may have been denied access to birth control will now have full access under their health insurance plan, with no co-pays or deductibles, beginning in August 2012. Birth control is the number one prescription drug for women ages 18 to 44 years. Right now, the average woman has to pay up to $50 per month for 30 years for birth control. As a result, many women have had to forgo regular use of birth control and half of US pregnancies are unplanned.
Women of all faiths are employed by hospitals and schools that are owned by religious interests, and they should not be denied equal health care coverage. We urge the Obama Administration to continue to stand strong for women’s health care.
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Part of the #HERvotes blog carnival.
Mission Accomplished With Komen: Now It’s Time to Save Birth Control Coverage!– Sammie Moshenberg, National Council of Jewish Women
Protect Women’s Health: Tell Your Senators to Reject Extreme Legislation– Judy Waxman, National Women’s Law Center
Margaret and Helen on the Issues– Margaret and Helen
An Equal & Just World: A Woman’s Right to Control Her Own Reproductive Health– Jewish Women International
Co-Pay for Birth Control? Not Under my Conscience Clause– Bettina Hager, National Women’s Political Caucus
Contraception mandate doesn’t force use -Bernice Durbin, Letter to the Editor, USA Today
Birth Control and Government: The Right of Refusal Should Belong to Women -Nancy K. Kaufman, National Council of Jewish Women
For the Sisters -Megan Lieff, Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice
Thank you, Obama, For Standing with ALL Women on Important Health Care Issues -Lacy Langbecker, the Wisconsin Alliance for Women’s Health
Birth Control Matters -Nita Chaudhary and Shaunna Thomas, UltraViolet
The Highs and Lows on Birth Control Access Coverage -Stephanie Drahan, National Women’s Law Center
Women of Childbearing Age: Take Your Talents Elsewhere -Jill C. Morrison, National Women’s Law Center
My Health Is Not a Pork Chop -Dania Palanker, National Women’s Law Center
NASW Supports HHS Decision on Women’s Rights -National Association of Social Workers
Fight Against the Catholic Attack on Preventative Healthcare for Women -Mallen Urso, National Women’s Political Caucus
Critics Get It Wrong on Contraceptive Coverage -Marcia D. Greenberger, National Women’s Law Center
One More Time…– Jill Morrison, National Women’s Law Center
Breaking News: Access to No-Cost Birth Control Secured -Judy Waxman, National Women’s Law Center
The Greatest Advance for Women in a Generation- Jean Silver-Isenstadt, MD, PhD, National Physicians Alliance
Fight Against an Expanded Religious Exemption that Denies Birth Control Coverage– Dren Asselmeier, Center for Inquiry on Campus
My Employer Shouldn’t Control My Contraception Decisions– Leila Abolfazli, National Women’s Law Center
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