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|Home > Media > Press Releases > 2017|
REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH EQUITY ACT MOVES FORWARD IN OREGON LEGISLATURE
SALEM, Ore., March 15, 2017 -- Advocates for reproductive health care and reproductive justice applauded the Oregon House Healthcare Committee for advancing the Reproductive Health Equity Act (House Bill 3391) with a public hearing. The hearing will be held at 3pm today in Hearing Room E at the State Capitol.
House Bill 3391 is sponsored by 19 State Representatives and 10 State Senators. The bill has been developed over the past two years by the Pro-Choice Coalition of Oregon with input from legislators and community leaders around Oregon.
The Reproductive Health Equity Act removes financial barriers and ensures that every Oregonian is empowered to make their own decisions about whether and when to become a parent. Limitations on reproductive health services can have profoundly harmful effects on public health and on a person's life opportunities. Particularly at risk are those who already face significant barriers to receiving high-quality care, such as low-income women, women of color, immigrant women, young women, survivors of domestic violence, and transgender and gender-nonconforming people.
This landmark legislation closes multiple gaps in reproductive health coverage:
* Requires all commercial plans to cover the entire cost of the full range of reproductive health services - including family planning, vasectomy and abortion - without deductible or co-pay by the patient.
* Establishes coverage for reproductive health care, especially postpartum care for Oregonians who are categorically excluded from health programs due to citizenship status.
* Assures access without government interference to the full range of reproductive health care, including abortion.
* Prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender identity in reproductive health coverage.
"This legislation clearly proclaims Oregon's commitment to equity," says Kimberly McCullough, Legislative Director for the American Civil Liberties Union of Oregon. "Oregonians have consistently elected leaders who understand that you can't have equity or choice without access. Even as politicians across the country take aim at reproductive freedom, House Bill 3391 will affirm the right to safe, legal abortion in Oregon, and will give everyone who calls Oregon home the health care they need to create and take care of their families when and as they choose."
The Pro-Choice Coalition of Oregon is a diverse, statewide coalition that is working to create a world where access to reproductive health care doesn't depend on who you are, where you live or how much you earn - where every Oregonian who can become pregnant has the opportunity to choose their own path to a healthy and meaningful life. The coalition consists of American Civil Liberties Union of Oregon, Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon, Family Forward Oregon, NARAL Pro-Choice Oregon, Oregon Latino Health Coalition, Planned Parenthood Advocates of Oregon and Western States Center.