The Feminist Majority applauds the introduction of the Equal Access to Abortion Coverage in Health Insurance (EACH Woman) Act and commends the leadership of Congresswomen Barbara Lee (D-CA), Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), and Diana DeGette (D-CO) in introducing this long overdue legislation to help all women, regardless of her income, have access to safe and affordable health coverage that includes abortion care.
“For too long, low-income women have been denied abortion coverage just because they can’t afford it and live in a state without coverage,” said Feminist Majority President Eleanor Smeal. “The size of your paycheck and which state you live in should not determine access. By ensuring abortion coverage for every woman, no matter how much money she earns and what state she resides in, the EACH Woman Act empowers all women to make their own decisions about pregnancy, based on their own needs.”
The EACH Woman Act would ensure Medicaid coverage for abortion care to low-income women. Federal restrictions on Medicaid coverage for abortion forces one in four low-income women to carry an unwanted pregnancy to term and pushes many women and families further into poverty. The EACH Woman Act would lift these restrictions, allowing all Medicaid beneficiaries, regardless of where they live, to make decisions about their health and lives.
“Politically motivated attacks on women’s access to abortion must end,” added Feminist Majority Policy Director Gaylynn Burroughs. “The EACH Woman Act takes a huge step forward by preventing politicians from playing games with women’s lives by deciding which services their health insurance can and cannot cover. No matter where you live, how much money you make, or how you get your insurance, women should be able to make basic health decisions about their lives, without government interference.”
In addition to lifting Medicaid restrictions, the EACH Woman Act ensures that those enrolled in government-sponsored health insurance plans, such as federal employees, have abortion coverage, as well as those who receive health care from a government provider or program. It would also prevent federal, state, and local governments from restricting insurance coverage of abortion in private health insurance plans, including plans purchased on health insurance exchanges created through the Affordable Care Act (ACA).###
Feature image via We Are Woman.