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: PPFA President joins Leslie Jones on The Daily Show to discuss health care provided at PP health centers, states with abortion bans further economically disempower people, our new cervical cancer blog, and Maine introduces slate of bills to protect repro rights.
“WE SELL FREEDOM AND AGENCY.”: Last night, Planned Parenthood President and CEO Alexis McGill Johnson joined The Daily Show, guest hosted by Leslie Jones. She discussed the wide range of care and education offered by Planned Parenthood health centers for all people, services that are all under attack by opponents of reproductive health care. She also spoke about the ways that men have shown up in support of reproductive freedom and their own health following the Dobbs decision. On the work and purpose of Planned Parenthood, Alexis noted:
“Planned Parenthood really represents reproductive freedom. We sell freedom and agency. It means that when you walk into a Planned Parenthood health center, you may be coming for birth control, STI testing, cervical cancer screenings, breast cancer screenings, gender affirming care, and yes, we proudly provide abortion because that is also part of health care. That is the work that we do."
Watch the segment here.
NEW REPORT ANALYZES HARMFUL ECONOMIC CONSEQUENCES OF ABORTION BANS: This week, the Economic Policy Institute released a report analyzing the economic consequences of abortion bans, further reinforcing what we have long known: Abortion is an economic issue, and abortion bans harm people’s wellbeing. The report found that wages, employment security, incarceration rates and access to unemployment benefits are all worse in states that ban or restrict abortion compared to states where abortion is legal.
“There is strong empirical evidence that abortion denial and abortion bans have negative economic consequences, from prolonged financial distress to lower wages and earnings, employment, educational attainment, and economic mobility,” said Asha Banerjee, who authored the report. “The states that have banned abortion rights are also the same states economically disempowering people through these other economic channels.”
In states that ban abortion, the minimum wage is on average $3.75 an hour lower, access to public assistance is 12% lower, and people are incarcerated at 1.5 times the rate of states where abortion is legal. These statistics are magnified across racial lines, especially for women of color. As the report states, “Incarceration and abortion bans are intertwined with the long legacy of state-sanctioned anti-Black racism.”
CHECK OUT PLANNED PARENTHOOD’S NEWEST CERVICAL HEALTH BLOG: January is Cervical Health Awareness Month. More than 13,000 people are diagnosed with cervical cancer each year and more than 4,000 people die from it. Black people and Latinas are more likely to experience the worst outcomes from cervical cancer due to a variety of factors, including systemic racism which creates inequities in health care access.
Cervical cancer is highly preventable with the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine, HPV tests, and Pap tests. Most health insurance plans must cover annual wellness exams and cervical cancer screenings at no cost to you. But even if you don’t have health insurance, Planned Parenthood can talk with you about affordable care options, including free or low-cost screenings.
Read more about cervical cancer prevention and Planned Parenthood’s services in this Planned Parenthood blog.
MAINE INTRODUCES SLATE OF BILLS TO PROTECT REPRODUCTIVE FREEDOM: This week, Governor Janet Mills, Maine Senate President Troy Jackson and Maine House Speaker Rachel Talbot Ross unveiled key bills to protect reproductive rights in Maine.
The package of bills includes provisions to bolster patient privacy protections and update data collection policies; protect providers and their medical licenses for providing abortion care to patients from out-of-state; prevent towns and municipalities from banning or restricting abortion — which is already safeguarded by Maine’s Reproductive Privacy Act of 1993 — at the local level; and mandate that private insurance cover abortion as part of comprehensive pregnancy care, easing the cost burden of abortion care. In a statement, Nicole Clegg, Chief Strategy and Impact Officer, Planned Parenthood of Northern New England said of the package:
“Mainers care deeply about our reproductive rights and freedoms, and with federal protections for abortion gone, state legislation to protect patients and providers has never been more critical. These proposed bills are a step in the right direction and serve as a light in the darkness of our current moment. This movement to protect reproductive healthcare for every Mainer, no matter what, is stronger than ever. We applaud Governor Mills, President Jackson and Speaker Talbot Ross for leading the way on these important bills in this important moment.”