Welcome to “The Quickie” — Planned Parenthood Action Fund’s daily tipsheet on the top health care & reproductive rights stories of the day. You can read “The Quickie'' online here.
In today’s Quickie: keeping abortion restrictions out of spending bills, immigrant health care access bill reintroduced, and people with disabilities deserve comprehensive sex ed.
MORE THAN 100 ADVOCACY ORGS TELL CONGRESS TO LEAVE ABORTION RESTRICTIONS OUT OF SPENDING BILLS: This morning, more than 100 advocacy organizations led by Planned Parenthood Federation of America and Physicians for Reproductive Health signed a letter urging Members of the U.S. House of Representatives to oppose attacks on mifepristone — one of two medications used in a medication abortion — in the fiscal year 2024 Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and Related Agencies bill. The letter encourages all members to support Representative Rosa DeLauro’s amendment to remove the medication abortion provision from the bill.
“Banning or restricting access to mifepristone across the country would most severely impact people living in medically underserved communities, especially people of color and people with low incomes, who already face barriers to care due to systemic inequities in our country’s health care system… New, repeated polling has demonstrated that people want mifepristone to remain on the market and accessible. In addition, the majority of people trust the FDA and want the agency to remain an independent body that is permitted to follow the medicine and science… Under no circumstances should lawmakers be using the appropriations process to further attack access to essential care.”
IMMIGRANT HEALTH CARE ACCESS BILL REINTRODUCED: Today, the Health Equity and Access under the Law (HEAL) for Immigrant Families Act was reintroduced by Senator Cory Booker (NJ), Rep. Pramila Jayapal (WA-07), and Rep. Nanette Barragán (CA-44). The HEAL Act would:
- Provide access to public health care coverage to DACA recipients;
- Provide access to Medicare, Medicaid, or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) to lawfully present immigrants without a five-year waiting period;
- Allow undocumented immigrants to purchase health insurance through the Affordable Care Act (ACA) marketplace;
- Create a state option plan for states to elect to expand Medicaid and CHIP eligibility to undocumented immigrants; and
- Remove unnecessary barriers to health care access for immigrants
The HEAL Act is necessary, especially given that noncitizens of the U.S. are more likely than citizens to be uninsured, making it more difficult to access needed care, including sexual and reproductive health care.
Read more about the HEAL Act here.
“PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES DESERVE COMPREHENSIVE SEX EDUCATION”: Yesterday was the 33rd anniversary of the landmark American with Disabilities Act (ADA), but sex education for people with disabilities is still severely lacking. As Shatika Turner, member of Planned Parenthood of Greater New York Advisory Council on Sex Education and a person with Cerebral Palsy, argues in an op-ed for Teen Vogue: “I know what my community needs when it comes to sex education for us, by us.”
“The most harmful misconceptions when it comes to people with disabilities are that we don’t have sexual lives, our disabilities define our identities, or that we don’t experience a spectrum of sexual orientations or gender identities,” Turner writes. “Even though systems and greater guidance have allowed certain sexual and reproductive health services to be readily available — widespread testing, conversations about consent, prevention and treatment of STIs — this type of availability doesn’t equate to accessibility for everyone, especially for people with disabilities.”
“For this Disability Pride Month, it is imperative that able-bodied people listen to and support the demands of people with disabilities, so we can all have the fullest range of equitable sexual and reproductive health information and care we deserve. We ask able-bodied educators and advocates to ensure sexual education curriculums are inclusive, affirming, and safe for our community. ”
Read the full op-ed at Teen Vogue.