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CA Attorney General moves to protect birth control access

2016-AB1671

Trump rule change “illegal and immoral”

On Thursday, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra’s office moved to protect birth control access for millions of Americans, including 6.8 million Californians. The Attorney General’s office filed a motion for nationwide injunctive relief in federal court to stop the Trump Administration’s new rules that allow employers to opt out of an Obama-era contraceptive mandate for any “religious or moral reason.”

California Planned Parenthood affiliates are directly affected by the rule change. Jenna Tosh Ph.D, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood California Central Coast, signed a declaration supporting the motion.

“Planned Parenthood is incredibly proud to stand with Attorney General Becerra as he leads the charge to protect the health of millions of Californians,” Tosh said. “We are sending a clear message to President Trump that his decision to strip birth-control access to 6.8 million people is illegal and immoral and he won’t get away with it.”

California law protects access to birth control by requiring that most health insurance plans cover a full range of FDA-approved birth control without co-pays or cost sharing. These laws do not allow employer op-outs, with limited exceptions for religious entities like churches or for companies that self fund their health coverage.

“Reducing barriers to birth control has played a significant role in reducing rates of unintended pregnancy and decreasing the risk of maternal mortality and adverse health outcomes for women and children,” Tosh said. “We will not let the administration play politics with our healthcare. We will not go backwards and we will use every tool at our disposal to resist.”

President Trump’s harmful action to restrict access to birth control will have wide-ranging impacts, erecting new barriers to reproductive health and leading to increases in unintended pregnancies, premature births, and maternal mortality. Over 62 million women have directly benefited from no-cost birth control, with women saving $1.4 billion on birth control pills in 2013 alone.

“It's a cruel joke on the part of President and the GOP that at the same time they are continuing their attempts to defund Planned Parenthood, their answer to contraceptive access is to have our health centers and publicly funded programs pick up the tab,” said Crystal Strait, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California. “We stand with Attorney General Becerra and will use every tool at our disposal to defeat this unlawful action."

Planned Parenthood’s 115 health centers provide birth control to nearly 600,000 patients statewide. Their preventive health care services include contraception, STI testing and treatment, abortion, sexual health education and information to close to 800,000 Californians each year.

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Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California (PPAC) is the state public policy office representing California’s seven separately incorporated Planned Parenthood affiliates. Through advocacy and electoral action, PPAC promotes sound public policy in areas of reproductive and preventive health care, family planning and comprehensive sexual health education.

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