Massachusetts House Passes Bill Ensuring Free Birth Control, Defying Trump Administration

by Lydia Wang

We’re still counting all the wins from this week’s elections, and amid all the recent bad news that seems to be taking over, there’s another glimmer of good: on Wednesday, the Massachusetts House of Representatives passed a bill that could secure access to free birth control for over 1.4 million women in the state. The Contraceptive ACCESS Bill will head to the Senate after an emphatic 140-16 vote, reported The Boston Globe.

“All women deserve the right to affordable [and] reliable contraceptive care,” said House Speaker Robert DeLeo on Twitter. “This is not only a health issue, but one of equity as well.”

Last month, Donald Trump issued an executive order allowing employers to choose not to provide birth control coverage on religious or moral grounds. The ACCESS bill would require health insurers to continue offering birth control coverage, though, regardless of any federal policy changes.

Dr. Jennifer Childs-Roshak, President of Planned Parenthood Advocacy Fund of Massachusetts, lauded the decision on Twitter yesterday. “While the Trump Administration is laser focused on making it harder for women to access basic health care, Massachusetts is stepping up to keep birth control affordable and accessible,” she wrote.

According to The Globe, the bill has 29 State Senate co-sponsors and the support of Governor Charlie Baker. If you are a constituent of Massachusetts, you can call your senator or urge them to vote YES through Planned Parenthood’s website.

Top photo via Flickr / Women’s eNews.

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