WASHINGTON, DC - Led by Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) and Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), Ranking Member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, today 33 Senate and House Democrats introduced the Protect Access to Birth Control Act, legislation to rescind the Trump Administration’s interim final rules issued on October 6 that allow companies to interfere in their employees’ health care choices and force women to pay more for an essential part of their health care.
If enacted, the Protect Access to Birth Control Act would ensure President Trump’s rules have no force or effect, safeguarding women’s continued access to contraceptive coverage.
"Denying women access to birth control is wrong and that's exactly what the Trump Administration did. A private employer has no right to deny a woman access to birth control and this legislation will make that clear” Senator Casey said, “Allowing a private employer to deny a woman access to birth control treats women like second-class citizens. It’s time for Congress to fix this injustice and pass this legislation overwhelmingly.”
Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), preventive health care, including the full range of FDA-approved contraception, must be covered without out of pocket costs. President Trump’s rule threatens the guarantee of contraceptive coverage for 62 million women across the country by eliminating the requirement to provide coverage for all employers and universities, including for-profit employers, if they have a religious objection. The rule also extends to publicly traded for-profit employers and universities if they have a moral objection. Employers and universities with religious objections that previously had to make sure women had another option to obtain contraceptive coverage, would no longer be required to provide that accommodation.
Full list of Senate Democrats joining Casey and Murray today: Ron Wyden (D-OR), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Tim Kaine (D-VA), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Corey Booker (D-NJ), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Bill Nelson (D-FL), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Richard J. Durbin (D-IL), Jack Reed (D-RI), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Al Franken (D-MN), Edward Markey (D-MA), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Mazie K. Hirono (D-HI), Chris Coons (D-DE), and Chris Van Hollen (D-MD).
Companion legislation will be introduced in the House of Representatives by: Reps. Diana DeGette (D-CO), Louise Slaughter (D-NY), Judy Chu (D-CA) and Lois Frankel (D-FL).
Text of bill HERE.