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Statement by Cecile Richards, President of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, on Obama Administration Announcement on Birth Control Coverage Benefit:
“In the face of a misleading and 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, no additional hurdles, and no matter where they work.
“We believe the compliance mechanism does not compromise a woman’s ability to access these critical birth control benefits.
“However we will be vigilant in holding the administration and the institutions accountable for a rigorous, fair and consistent implementation of the policy, which does not compromise the essential principles of access to care.
“The individual rights and liberties of all women and all employees in accessing basic preventive health care is our fundamental concern.
“Planned Parenthood continues to believe that those institutions who 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.
“The birth control benefit underscores the fact that birth control is basic health care, and is fundamental to improving women’s health and the health of their families.
“That’s why women have consistently applauded the Obama administration for one of the greatest expansions for women’s health in decades.
“Unfortunately there are significant and immediate threats to women’s health and access to birth control in the House and Senate that would completely take away access to birth control and severely undermine women’s health.
“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.
“Employers should not be allowed to impose their personal beliefs on employees regarding birth control coverage or basic health care.
“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.
“That’s why Planned Parenthood, and women across the country, won’t let up for one minute in our fight to protect the birth control benefit and women’s health.”