House Republicans' Attack on Women's Health

Writing at CNN, Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards lambastes far-right members of the House for passing a little-noticed amendment that would allow employers and insurers to refuse to cover women's preventive health care because of personal and "moral" objections.

Posted:
 
shutdown20attack20on20women10213575lh
President of Planned Parenthood Cecile Richards (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards, writing at CNN, puts the spotlight on a little-noticed amendment that far-right House Republicans passed amid the government-shutdown fracas that would essentially allow employers and insurers to refuse to cover women's preventive health care because of personal and "moral" objections.

This would include birth control, HPV testing, breast-feeding services and counseling for domestic violence. Any employer or insurance company could refuse to cover them, and women would have no recourse. It's a clause that could easily be abused by employers and insurers. And the amendment only covers the women's preventive benefit -- employers would not be able to refuse to cover preventive care specific to men for "moral" reasons.

This is from the same House Republican leaders who tried to shut the government down in 2011 over funding for Planned Parenthood's cancer screenings, birth control and other preventive health care services and have tried dozens of times since then to block women from making their own personal medical decisions.

This unprecedented and ongoing attack on women's health is out of touch with the needs of millions of women and is deeply unpopular with the American public.

Seven in 10 Americans believe that health insurance companies should cover the full cost of birth control, just as they do for other preventive services. These policies are working.

Already, 27 million women across the country have been able to receive preventive health care without a co-pay, and an estimated 47 million will benefit when the law takes full effect. 

Read Cecile Richard's entire piece at CNN.

The Root aims to foster and advance conversations about issues relevant to the black Diaspora by presenting a variety of opinions from all perspectives, whether or not those opinions are shared by our editorial staff.

Like The Root on Facebook. Follow us on Twitter.