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Rollback of Obama-era Mandate
Issued on Friday, October 6, 2017

Summary

On Friday, October 6, the Trump administration expanded the rights of employers with religious or moral convictions to deny contraceptive insurance coverage to their employees. Employers can now opt out of including birth control in their health insurance plans, rolling back Obama-era requirements. While Obama was president, his administration believed birth control is an essential part of women’s health and should not place a financial burden on women. The Trump administration is now saying that contraceptive insurance imposes a “substantial burden” on the freedom of religion and could promote “risky sexual behavior” among adolescents. Some religious groups such as the Little Sisters of the Poor, a group of Roman Catholic nuns, applaud the new rule saying it allows them to practice their religious beliefs. Frustrated activists like the Planned Parenthood spokeswoman, Dana Singiser argue, “if you truly want to reduce the need for abortion, invest in women’s health and preventative care.” LEARN MORE

Analysis

Sixty-two million women gained no-cost contraception coverage under Obama’s mandate and hundreds of thousands of them could lose this benefit under Trump’s rule. Lawyers and activists are already working to block the rule, and a couple of states have filed lawsuits saying the rules violate the First Amendment. The Obama administration’s mandate did not require women to use contraceptive insurance, but ensured that employers provided it. With this structure, women were in control of their own decisions regarding birth control and did not need to worry about the costs associated with it. Many believe that this structure is better because women could still observe their own religion with the option of free birth control if that aligned with their beliefs. LEARN MORE 

Engagement Resources

  • Bustle – Learn more and make a stand against Trump’s birth control rule. This site provides great reading material and advocacy ideas.
  • Planned Parenthood – Learn about the progress the United States has made to provide contraceptives, why it is so important, and how this new rule threatens it all.
  • As always, contact your state’s elected officials and voice your concerns or support.

This brief was compiled by Ann Furbush. If you have comments or want to add the name of your organization to this brief please contact Ann@usresistnews.org.


 

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