St. Paul, MN – May 1, 2018, Republicans in the Minnesota House voted to allow employers to deny coverage for birth control, prioritizing bosses’ religious beliefs over people’s rights to basic health care.
“In a nod to the Trump Administration, Minnesota House Republicans voted to allow a person’s boss to decide whether their insurance will cover birth control,” said Sarah Stoesz, President of the Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota Action Fund. “Nine out of ten women will use birth control at some point in their lives and today’s vote is out-of-step with the clear majority of Minnesotans who support access to this fundamental health care benefit.”
The measure would codify into Minnesota law the Trump Administration’s policy to allow any employer to deny insurance coverage for birth control if they are personally opposed to contraception. The move would jeopardize access to no-cost birth control for over 1 million Minnesotans.
At the same time, House Republicans voted to reject the Protect Access to Contraception (PAC) Act. The PAC Act would have protected no-cost birth control coverage in Minnesota from further attacks by the Trump Administration. The bill would guarantee the basic right of Minnesotans to control their own bodies, plan their families and access the birth control method that is right for them, regardless of cost and free of political interference.
“Birth control is basic health care. Democrats and Republicans used to agree on that,” added Stoesz. “In fact, the nation’s largest family planning program was started by Republicans in 1970. Yet, today, Republican lawmakers want to take away access to birth control.”
Founded in 1992, the Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota Action Fund is an independent, non-partisan, non-profit organization. As the advocacy and electoral arm of PPMNS, we mobilize supporters of all parties to defend and increase access to family planning services and fact based, medically accurate sexuality education. We work to inspire and engage citizens to take up the cause of reproductive health and rights through education, electoral activity, grassroots organizing and legislative advocacy..