For Immediate Release
Mai Shiozaki, 202-628-8669, ext. 116; cell 202-641-1906
NOW Outraged at House Vote on Abortion Coverage -- Women's Rights Traded Away
WASHINGTON - NOW is outraged to learn that the House Energy and Commerce
Committee passed an amendment excluding abortion services from the
"essential" health benefits package as defined by the government. Under
this amendment, subsidies used to help pay insurance premiums for
low-income people could not be used for abortion services. The New York
Times reports that "insurers must use money from private sources to pay
for any abortions."
"Reproductive health care is a fundamental right. Any health care
plan that does not cover the full range of reproductive services, including
abortion, discriminates against women," said NOW President Terry
O'Neill. "Once again, our representatives are giving in to the right
wing by trading away women's rights. Well, I have a message for them,
our reproductive rights are not theirs to give away."
O'Neill noted that a majority of voters support coverage for
abortion services, with only about a quarter opposed to using tax
dollars to pay for abortion. In addition, a recent study found that
most people in the U.S. with employer-based insurance currently have
coverage for abortion. "Don't low-income people deserve the same level
of coverage as other people in this country?" asked O'Neill. "Our
lawmakers should be ashamed of themselves for perpetuating class-based
and gender-based biases as they attempt to 'reform' our broken health
This is the world we live in. This is the world we cover.
Because of people like you, another world is possible. There are many battles to be won, but we will battle them together—all of us. Common Dreams is not your normal news site. We don't survive on clicks. We don't want advertising dollars. We want the world to be a better place. But we can't do it alone. It doesn't work that way. We need you. If you can help today—because every gift of every size matters—please do. Without Your Support We Simply Don't Exist.
The National Organization for Women (NOW) is the largest organization of feminist activists in the United States. NOW has 500,000 contributing members and 550 chapters in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.