“It is unbelievable that in the year 2012 we have to fight for access to birth control,” says Planned Parenthood.
Washington, DC — Planned Parenthood is deeply disappointed in today’s decision by Senior Judge John L. Kane in Colorado, granting a preliminary injunction against the critical birth control benefit and taking the benefit away from employees of a for-profit company in Colorado. This case seeks to give a private employer the ability to take away the new birth control coverage benefit from employees – a standard benefit afforded to women in America under the Affordable Care Act.
“Access to birth control is a critical health and economic concern for women,” said Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. “The Affordable Care Act has guaranteed a new standard of health coverage for every American, regardless of their employer’s personal political views. There is no reason why a private, for-profit business owner should be able to demand a personal exception from this standard — denying his employees the same level of coverage that others will have.”
Doctors and public health experts agree that birth control is a basic and essential component of women’s preventive health care, and 34 percent of women voters report having struggled to afford prescription birth control at some point in their lives and, as a result, used birth control inconsistently. Virtually all women in America have used birth control. In fact, 99 percent of sexually active American women report using contraception at some point in their lives. Every year, Planned Parenthood sees over two million women specifically for contraception at nearly 800 health centers across the country.
“As the leading women’s health care provider and advocate, Planned Parenthood will continue fighting to ensure that birth control coverage without co-pays remains in place across the country for millions of women,” said Richards. “Politics have no place in a woman’s personal health decisions.”
According to a recent Hart Research Poll, when it comes to employers providing full coverage for prescription birth control, voters see this issue as a matter of women’s health care and access to birth control and reject efforts to frame this as a religious liberty issue. By a 20-point margin, voters are more likely to say that this issue is a matter of women’s health care and access to birth control (56 percent) than an employer’s religious liberty (36 percent) when it comes to whether religiously affiliated employers should be required to provide coverage for prescription birth control.
July 27, 2012
Planned Parenthood Federation of America media office: 212-261-4433
July 27, 2012