In 2022, the U.S. Supreme Court stole our federal constitutional right to abortion. Overnight, millions of people lost their most fundamental freedoms as politicians and judges across the country moved to eliminate access to abortion care and ban abortion outright.
Yet in Rhode Island, where the right to abortion remains protected, our champions continue to fight for abortion access for all people in our state because the right to abortion is meaningless if you can’t access abortion care. We are living in a post-Roe America, which means there’s more work to do.
The 2023 legislative session is underway and here are a few of our priorities to keep our state moving forward.
Equitable Abortion Access
Abortion bans aren’t just a problem in states like Texas, Mississippi, and Arkansas. Right now, state laws prevent nearly 1 in 3 Rhode Island residents – people enrolled in Medicaid and state employees and their dependents – from using their health insurance to cover abortion. These bans on insurance coverage impact nearly 80,000 enrolled in Medicaid and 6,500 people on the state employees plan of reproductive age in our state.
This year, we must pass the Equality in Abortion Coverage Act to help ensure equitable access to abortion for all Rhode Islanders so people can make the health care decisions that are best for them without political interference.
The bill will:
- End Rhode Island’s abortion bans
- Remove state laws prohibiting more than 300,000 residents from using their health insurance to cover abortion
- Expand abortion access by adding abortion coverage to our Medicaid program
Advancing Reproductive Health + Rights
Alongside our coalition and community partners, we will continue the fight this year to:
- Protect access to no-cost birth control and codify the essential health benefits of the Affordable Care Act in state law
- Expand access to birth control by allowing pharmacists to prescribe
- Safeguard reproductive rights and expand access to sexual and reproductive health care for all
- Support expansion of paid family leave law
And, we continue to support the work of our coalition partners to build a more equitable Rhode Island; address economic inequity and housing insecurity; expand voting rights; address sexual violence and protect victims of sexual assault; and fight for racial justice, LGBTQ+ equality, immigrants’ rights, and more.