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President Obama Reaffirms Commitment to Women’s Access to Birth Control; Fight Continues in Congress

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Jen Aulwes, 651.755.9557


Published: | Updated: 02.10.12

In the face of an outrageous assault on women’s health, the Obama administration has reaffirmed its commitment to ensuring all women will have access to birth control coverage, with no costly co-pays and no additional hurdles, no matter where they work.

“Our number one concern is making sure women have access to basic health care, including access to contraception, and Obama’s announcement today means that all women will have that access no matter where they work or who their employer is,” said Sarah Stoesz, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota (PPMNS). “The compliance mechanism does not compromise a woman’s ability to access critical birth control benefits.”

The Obama Administration’s announcement clarifies how religious organizations can comply with the law and means that health insurance companies, not Catholic businesses, will absorb the cost of the co-pay for contraception. The president strongly stood up to those who were trying to deny this benefit to women who work in religious institutions.

Planned Parenthood continues to believe that those institutions that serve the broad public, employ the broad public, and receive taxpayer dollars, should be required to follow the same rules as everyone else, including providing birth control coverage and information.

“As a trusted health care provider to one in five women, Planned Parenthood’s priority is increasing access to preventive health care. This birth control coverage benefit does just that,” Stoesz continued.

Unfortunately, this fight continues in Congress. One bill, the Rubio-Manchin bill, would allow any business or corporation, on the basis of personal religious belief or moral conviction, to take away birth control coverage from their employees. Another bill, sponsored by Senator Blunt (R-MO), would drastically undermine women’s health and allow any employer or health plan to refuse to cover any health care service they object to on religious or moral grounds.

Planned Parenthood will continue to remain vigilant in protecting women’s access to health care at the state and federal levels.

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