U.S. House of Representatives passes harmful abortion funding ban
Statement of Vicki Saporta, President and CEO of the National Abortion Federation (NAF), on the passage of H.R. 7, the so-called “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion and Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act”:
Just days after millions of people marched nationwide in support of women’s access to safe, legal abortion care, anti-choice politicians are trying to withhold abortion access from women who rely on the federal government for their health care. H.R. 7 targets low-income women, federal employees, women in the military, and women in the Peace Corps. It would also prohibit the District of Columbia from using its own locally raised revenue to help low-income women obtain the abortion care they need.
Funding restrictions are the biggest barrier to women’s access to abortion care. Through our toll-free Hotline and member clinics throughout the United States, we hear from thousands of women every month who cannot afford to access the abortion care they need. We hear from women who are on Medicaid, but live in states where it will not cover abortion; women with medical conditions who need to terminate their pregnancies to preserve their health; and women who must delay their care while they struggle to raise the necessary funds. Although abortion remains legal, for these women it is simply not accessible.
This bill is part of the Trump-Pence agenda to punish women like Kendra,* a 43-year-old mother of two. When Kendra gave birth to her first child she nearly lost her life due to complications during the pregnancy. Her second child had severe health problems, which were almost fatal. When Kendra discovered she was pregnant again, she was afraid of the same health complications she had with her previous pregnancies and how they would affect her ability to care for her children. Kendra and her husband could barely make ends meet for their family, and she knew they could not provide for another child. Kendra and her husband made the decision to have an abortion; however, she couldn’t afford her procedure. Coverage restrictions like those in H.R. 7 make it more difficult—if not impossible—for women like Kendra to access the abortion care they need.
A woman’s access to abortion should not depend on where she lives or how much money she has. And the House and its leadership should not interfere with personal medical decisions in order to advance their own ideological agenda, which most Americans do not support.
*Name changed to protect privacy.
Alissa Manzoeillo, National Abortion Federation
202.667.5881, ext 219; 202.595.4395 (after hours/cell)
The National Abortion Federation (NAF) is the professional association of abortion providers. Our members include individuals, private and non-profit clinics, Planned Parenthood affiliates, women’s health centers, physicians’ offices, and hospitals who together care for approximately half the women who choose abortion in the U.S. and Canada each year. Our members also include public hospitals and both public and private clinics in Mexico City and private clinics in Colombia. Our mission is to ensure safe, legal, and accessible abortion care, which promotes health and justice for women.