For the first time, two California lawmakers joined with the national Planned Parenthood Action Fund (PPAF) and fellow state legislators from across the country to discuss strategies to protect access to reproductive health care from unprecedented attacks by the Trump administration. California Assemblymember Monique Limón and Senator Josh Newman met with lawmakers at the PPAF State Legislator Summit, November 15 and 16, to explore what can be done in individual states to implement effective resistance campaigns.
The State Legislator Summit focused on what’s at stake for women’s health care in 2018 after numerous threats to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA); with the Trump Administration most recently expanding ways for employers to opt out of providing birth control, affecting millions of women.
Assemblymember Limón, representing the 37th district which includes parts of Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties, is a champion for women. As a former Commissioner on the Santa Barbara County Commission for Women, and as an educator working closely with students and their families, she helped connect women in the community with private and public resources. At the Summit, her firsthand experiences were an important foundation for connecting with leaders across the country in understanding what is at stake in the ongoing work for women’s rights.
“It has been an enlightening experience listening to stories from across the country. They are a reminder that progress is hard won,” said Assemblymember Limón. “California is a model for the rest of the country and we will continue to push forward, supporting our fellow Americans, to protect access to complete, quality health care.
Senator Josh Newman
Senator Josh Newman, representing the 29th district which includes parts of Orange County, has a distinguished career of service, including serving in the United States Army and a non-profit founder. As chair of the Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs and a member of the Business and Professions, Health, Insurance, and Human Services Committees Senator Newman focuses on finding common sense, pragmatic solutions that help improve the quality of life for California families.
“Not only are the ongoing attacks on women’s health immoral, like allowing employers to opt out of providing coverage for birth control, they would actually ultimately prove bad for business,” said Senator Newman. “That’s why lawmakers across the country have asked business leaders to pledge that they will continue to cover birth control as part of their health care plans.”
PPAC CEO Crystal Strait
The lawmakers were accompanied by Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California (PPAC) CEO Crystal Strait. PPAC is the statewide policy office for Planned Parenthood in California, advocating for the services Planned Parenthood health centers provide to close to 800,000 Californians every year — services like birth control, life-saving cancer screenings STI testing and treatment, abortion, sexual and reproductive health information and education.
“We have a great story to tell and Assemblymember Limón and Senator Newman are the best of California. They offered their colleagues strategies to stay the course in unwavering support for health care access, in the face of relentless attacks,” said Crystal Strait. “We are proud of Assemblymember Limón and Senator Newman and their efforts in the leading the resistance.”
About Planned Parenthood Action Fund
Launched in 1989, Planned Parenthood Action Fund is a nonprofit, non-partisan group backed by more than 10 million activists, donors, and other supporters all working to advance access to sexual health care and defend reproductive rights. While PPAF works at the national level, local Planned Parenthood advocacy and political organizations are fighting to defend reproductive rights in states across the country.