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Des Moines, IA — More than 160 reimbursement requests for emergency contraception for sexual assault survivors are pending approval from the Iowa Attorney General’s Office, as Attorney General Brenna Bird’s review of the program reaches its five-month mark.  

The current backlog of requests for Crime Victim Compensation Funds totals approximately $7,500 and is nearly double what it was weeks after Bird’s office put reimbursement for sexual assault survivors on hold as it started its review of the program in April. The reimbursement requests are from hospitals and pharmacies across the state this year, with several dating as far back as 2020. One includes a case of child abuse.  

Crime Victim Compensation Funds are not funded with taxpayer dollars but, instead, money from criminal penalties and fees. Bird recently indicated she intends to permanently end spending the funds on emergency contraception and abortion care during a PBS television interview.  

“Iowans are suffering at the hands of their state leaders because of the dangerous policies they are implementing that disregard basic humanity,” said Ruth Richardson, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood North Central States. “It’s unjust and unfair that sexual assault survivors are being put in this position. The last thing they should have to worry about is affording the care they need after being attacked. They need compassionate, comprehensive care and the attorney general is cruelly putting that out of reach." 

The Republican led state legislature that controls state government has unleashed a storm of dangerous attacks against the Iowans they serve—including the recent passage of the six-week abortion ban—taking away their bodily autonomy and denying their rights to decide what is best for them. 

In addition, the Iowa Legislature has passed a slew of discriminatory bills against Iowa’s transgender youth that were signed by the Governor behind closed doors. 

In addition to these legislative attacks against Iowa’s most vulnerable citizens, Attorney General Attorney Brenna Bird, a newly elected Republican, who is a self-proclaimed ardent anti-abortion supporter, not only paused reimbursement for sexual assault survivors but also joined a multi-state effort to cut off access nationwide to mifepristone, one of the most widely used medication abortion drugs. She and other attorney generals also sent letters to at least three national corporations warning them of the legality of policies and practices related to abortion care.  



Planned Parenthood North Central States and its subsidiary organizations provide, promote, and protect reproductive and sexual health through high quality care, education and advocacy. A member of America’s most trusted reproductive health care provider, our affiliate is proud to support and operate 28 health centers across our five-state region (Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota).  Each year, we provide health care to nearly 100,000 people and health education to more than 50,000 people in our region.  

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