NEW YORK--Upon the news that three federal Courts of Appeals have now ruled that the birth control benefit in the Affordable Care Act does not or likely does not infringe on the liberties of religiously-affiliate institutions, Planned Parenthood issued the following statement.

"Yet another court has affirmed what we already know: these claims are baseless and ultimately about paperwork - not religious freedom,” said Cecile Richards, President of Planned Parenthood Action Fund, “ Religious groups have been exempt all along and will continue to be, which is why every appeals court has rejected these claims.
 
“At the end of the day, this benefit respects religious liberty while providing much needed preventative care to millions of women. Let this case serve as a reminder that the birth control benefit is having a transformative effect on millions of women's lives. As a result, more than 55 million women have saved more than 483 million dollars in a year. This benefit is good for women and good for our economy, with studies showing birth control is responsible for fully one-third of the wage gains women have made since the 1960s.”

Late today, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit declined to block the contraception coverage requirement in the Affordable Care Act for the University of Notre Dame. All three of the Courts of Appeals to have considered the latest version of the birth control benefit have rejected the plaintiffs’ arguments.

Background:

  • Nationally, 55.6 million women are eligible for preventive care, including birth control, without a copay, thanks to the Affordable Care Act.

  • Women saved $483 million in the first year of the benefit on their prescriptions for birth control pills alone.

  • When the Supreme Court ruled that Hobby Lobby could decide whether their employees get access to no-copay birth control coverage, 250,000 people signed Planned Parenthood’s Join the Dissent digital campaign.

  • You can read 50 supporter stories from across the United States in the “Birth Control: We All Benefit” booklet here.

  • A 2012 University of Michigan study found that fully one-third of the wage gains women have made since the 1960s are the result of access to oral contraceptives. This study also found that the decrease in the gap among 25–49-year-olds between men’s and women’s annual incomes “would have been 10 percent smaller in the 1980s and 30 percent smaller in the 1990s” in the absence of widespread legal birth control access.

  • Highlighting the fact that birth control is a top economic driver for women, Bloomberg Businessweek recently listed contraception as one of the most transformational developments in the business sector in the last 85 years.