Anniversary of Landmark Birth Control Decision Comes As Birth Control Is Under Threat Like Never Before

Leaked Trump roll would roll back access to birth control for millions

Portland, Maine –– On the 52nd anniversary of Griswold v. Connecticut, the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision that recognized the first constitutional protection for birth control, the Trump administration is expected to roll back access to birth control for millions of women.

“For many women, it’s hard to imagine that just over 50 years ago, birth control was not only inaccessible, but illegal. Since Griswold v. Connecticut, birth control has had a dramatic impact on women and families in this country — allowing women to invest in their futures and their careers and giving them time to plan for their families,” said Nicole Clegg, Vice President of Public Policy for Planned Parenthood Maine Action Fund.

Access to birth control has opened up educational and career opportunities for women and catapulted women into more management roles. In fact, a study has shown that the pill is responsible for one-third of women’s wage gains relative to men since the 1960s and nearly 9 in 10 sexually active women have used a form of highly effective birth control covered by the Affordable Care Act.  

But President Trump and his administration are now taking steps to roll back access to birth control under the ACA. A leaked rule would allow any employer to deny birth control coverage to their employees.

“This new rule would mean no matter where she works or goes to school, from private universities to huge, publicly-traded companies, any woman across the country could be denied insurance coverage for birth control based on the whim of her employer or school administrator,” added Clegg. “Ironically, on the anniversary of the Griswold decision, we are at risk of losing a lifetime of progress on access to birth control.”

The majority of American people don’t agree with a change to birth control access like the one the Trump administration is considering. A 2016 poll from the Pew Research Center found that 67 percent of Americans believe employers should be required to cover birth control.

As the federal government works to allow bosses to deny birth control to women, a number of states, including Maine, are passing 12-month birth control bills to increase access to birth control.

LD 1237, sponsored by Rep. Jay McCreight of Harpswell, eliminates medically-unnecessary restrictions on insurance coverage of contraception by requiring insurance companies to cover up to 12- month supply of birth control at a time. The bill was passed unanimously in the House and 25-10 in the Senate. It awaits action by the governor.

 

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Planned Parenthood Maine Action Fund is an independent, nonpartisan, not-for-profit membership organization formed as the advocacy and political arm of Planned Parenthood of Northern New England in Maine. The Action Fund engages in educational and electoral activity, including voter education, grassroots organizing, and legislative advocacy.

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