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Last Friday, the 3rd U.S Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a nation-wide injunction to block the Trump administration from enforcing new rules that would allow employers to obtain exemptions from an ACA requirement that insurance must cover women’s birth control. This decision upheld a district court decision issued in January that blocked regulations issued by the Department of Health and Human Services allowing employers with religious and moral objections to seek exemptions from this ACA requirement. In Friday’s decision, the three-judge panel agreed with the Democratic state attorneys general from Pennsylvania and New Jersey arguing that the Health and Human Services rules had “serious substantive problems.” The Trump administration itself cited that up to 126,400 women nationally would lose contraceptive coverage due to the rules issued by Health and Human Services. Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro commended the ruling as a “huge victory for women’s rights and the rule of law.” Shapiro, along with New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal, brought the lawsuit against the Trump administration’s regulations. In a statement, Shapiro further added that “contraception is medicine—pure and simple.” Louise Melling, the deputy legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union, also praised the court for its decision. In […]
The Trump administration is implementing a policy that prevents clinics that provide abortion counseling and referrals from receiving Title X Family Planning Program funding, funding that provides birth control, STD tests, cervical and breast cancer screenings, and reproductive health care to low-income and uninsured individuals. Under Title X, federal dollars already cannot directly fund abortion but this rule will make it harder for patients to seek the care and counseling they need. According to Planned Parenthood President, Leana Wen, Planned Parenthood serves 41% of Title X patients but Planned Parenthood is estimated to lose $60 million in federal funding. “This rule will block doctors across the country from referring Title X patients for safe, legal abortion,” Wen said. Opponents have slammed this policy as a “gag rule,” saying it prevents physicians from giving their patients complete and accurate medical guidance. In order to continue receiving Title X funding, health care providers must demonstrate clear physical and financial separation between abortion services and other reproductive health services. In some cases, patients must enter through different doors depending on which services they seek. This is supposed to ensure that Title X-funded services remain separate from abortion procedures. In reality, it perpetrates stigma […]
The Feminist Majority Foundation (FMF) has launched a campaign to educate and mobilize students against a thinly-veiled “personhood” amendment to the Alabama state constitution on the ballot this November. Amendment 2 would grant full legal rights to fertilized eggs, embryos, and fetuses, declare that there is no constitutional right to abortion in Alabama, and pave the way to banning abortion and some forms of birth control in the state.
Irish 4 Reproductive Health, a student group at the University of Notre Dame, together with several individuals insured by the university, sued the U.S. Departments of Health and Human Services, Treasury, and Labor as well as Notre Dame itself for entering into an agreement to deny students, university employees, and their dependents insurance coverage of birth control, in violation of U.S. Constitution and federal law.