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Women continue to face restrictions on accessing reproductive health care. In addition to restrictions on abortion and birth control, women face hospitals that won't correctly treat an ectopic pregnancy, pharmacists that refuse to fill a woman's birth control prescription, and even employers that want to fire a woman for using in vitro fertilization. We are working to stop these threats to a woman's ability to make the best decision for her, her family, and her future.

Highlights

Legal Briefs & Testimony | Amicus Brief in Iowa Telemedicine

November 21, 2014

The Center, along with the Iowa Coalition Against Domestic Violence and the Iowa Coalition Against Sexual Assault, filed a brief in the Iowa Supreme Court against a regulation that requires medically unnecessary, politically motivated, and harmful measures during medication abortions, which have been proven to be safe and effective. The regulation requires that a physician be physically present and perform a physical exam of the pregnant woman before providing a medication abortion. It also requires every patient to return to the same clinic for a routine follow-up visit. In doing so, the regulation would end Planned Parenthood of the Heartland’s telemedicine program, which has extended access to medication abortion to women in more remote parts of the state.

A medication abortion via telemedicine allows a physician to talk with a woman via secure videoconferencing before remotely dispensing an abortion-inducing drug. A Planned Parenthood staff member is in the room at all times to supervise and provide support. The brief sets out why the regulation ending the telemedicine program will increase travel time and costs for rural women, increase barriers to care for women living in poverty, and endanger women for whom surgical abortion is contraindicated. The brief explains how the regulation will also potentially harm women in abusive relationships because of the barriers they face in obtaining an abortion. It also emphasizes that the Board implemented the regulation even though the telemedicine program is proven safe.

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Fact Sheet | States Take Action to Stop Bosses’ Religious Beliefs from Trumping Women’s Reproductive Health Care Decisions

October 17, 2014

Across the country, employers are using their religious beliefs to discriminate against their employees because of their employees’ personal reproductive health care decisions. Women are being punished or fired for using birth control, for undergoing in vitro fertilization in order to get pregnant, or for having sex without being married. The Supreme Court’s recent decision permitting some bosses to refuse to provide insurance coverage of birth control to their female employees highlights how a boss’s religious beliefs are trumping an employee’s health and access to the health care they and their families need.

Employers should not be allowed to use their personal religious beliefs to discriminate against employees who typically come from all different faiths. Fortunately, states have begun to step forward to protect employees, introducing legislation to make it clear that bosses cannot obstruct or coerce an employee when that employee makes a personal reproductive health care decision.

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Legal Briefs & Testimony | NWLC Amicus Briefs Supporting the Contraceptive Coverage Benefit

May 30, 2014

The Center is filing friend of the court briefs in lawsuits challenging the federal contraceptive coverage benefit, brought by employers who want to deny their employees this important benefit.  These cases involve suits brought under the First Amendment to the US Constitution and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.  These cases will decide whether a boss’s religious beliefs trump women’s health and women’s access to the health care they need.

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Fact Sheet | If Opponents of Birth Control Have Their Way, Millions of Women Would Lose Access to Birth Control

September 14, 2012

Opponents of birth control in Congress are working night and day to enact new laws and policies that would deny millions of women access to birth control -- including access already guaranteed to women by law. Thankfully, so far, supporters of birth control have stopped the worst of these Congressional attacks.  Although the anti-birth control efforts have taken several forms, they all would have the same effect: taking birth control coverage away from women nationwide. A comparison of opponents’ and supporters’ legislative priorities makes the difference clear: while opponents of contraception would take it away from women, supporters work to ensure that women have access to affordable birth control.

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More Resources

Legal Briefs & Testimony | Amicus Brief in Iowa Telemedicine

November 21, 2014

Fact Sheet | The Hyde Amendment Creates an Unacceptable Barrier To Women Getting Abortions: We Must Use the Resources To Get Women the Health Care They Need

November 10, 2014

Fact Sheet | If You Really Care About Environmental Justice, You Should Care About Reproductive Justice!

October 22, 2014

Fact Sheet | States Take Action to Stop Bosses’ Religious Beliefs from Trumping Women’s Reproductive Health Care Decisions

October 17, 2014

Fact Sheet | If You Really Care about Criminal Justice, You Should Care about Reproductive Justice!

October 03, 2014