FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 9, 2020
Contact: Liza Dee, [email protected]
Statement from Andrea Miller, president, National Institute for Reproductive Health (NIRH)
NEW YORK – Andrea Miller, president of the National Institute for Reproductive Health (NIRH), released the following statement today in response to the Supreme Court’s decision to expand employers’ ability to deny birth control coverage to employees or students. The decision came in response to two cases – Little Sisters of the Poor v. Pennsylvania and Trump v. Pennsylvania – representing challenges to the Trump-Pence administration’s hostile attacks on employer-based contraception coverage under the Affordable Care Act.
“The Supreme Court just gave employers a license to discriminate,” said Andrea Miller, president of NIRH. “Expanding employers’ ability to deny coverage of birth control is exactly the opposite direction from where we should be headed as a country. Access to birth control is crucial for the health and economic security of millions of people, and the burdens of additional out-of-pocket costs will fall hardest on Black people and other communities of color and low-income individuals. In the midst of a pandemic, we should be expanding access to reproductive health care so every person — regardless of race, income level, or where they live — has the ability to make their own decisions about their bodies and their futures.”
“And as we work to mitigate the damage that the Trump-Pence administration has dealt to reproductive freedom, we must also continue to focus on how states can pass policies and enact legislation that ensure their residents are able to access the reproductive health care they need to control their bodies, and their lives and their futures,” Miller said.
Since the 1990s, states have led the way when it comes to fighting to protect and advance access to contraceptive care, according to NIRH’s End of Year Report. This year, several states made contraception more accessible by expanding insurance coverage, along with other advancements, as outlined in NIRH’s report, Gaining Ground: 2020 Midyear Report, released today. In 2019, NIRH successfully pushed for the passage of New York State’s Comprehensive Contraception Coverage Act, which expands access to contraception, including emergency contraception, by requiring health insurers to cover contraception without a co-payment. New Mexico passed a similar law in 2019, meaning 17 states now have contraceptive equity laws on the books.
The National Institute for Reproductive Health builds power at the state and local level to change public policy, galvanize public support, and normalize women’s decisions about abortion and contraception.
The National Institute for Reproductive Health (NIRH) is an advocacy group that works directly with state and local reproductive health, rights, and justice organizations and allied groups to protect and advance access to reproductive healthcare. For more than 40 years, NIRH has been partnering with communities to build coalitions, launch campaigns, and successfully advocate for policy change. NIRH’s strategy is to go on the offensive and focus on communities where change is needed, so the fabric of reproductive freedom becomes harder to tear apart.