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'Missouri Legislators Treat Women as Second Class Citizens,' Says Planned Parenthood

Representatives of Planned Parenthood of St. Louis state they are concerned because today in Jefferson City "employers were put in charge of women’s birth control decisions."

Planned Parenthood of St. Louis representatives state Missouri legislators ignored the 700,000 Missouri women that use some form of birth control by allowing SB749—the Birth Control Refusal bill—to become law on Wednesday, Sept. 12. The organization's spokesperson said the bill puts employers and insurers in charge of women's birth control decision-making.

“The Missouri legislature, beholden to lobbyists that see an abortion in every birth control pill, has done a huge disservice to all Missouri women,” said Peter Brownlie, president and chief executive officer of Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri.

“Birth control is not just basic, preventive health care for women, it is a pocketbook issue. Without this new birth control coverage benefit, many women will now have to continue paying $15 to $50 a month on top of their premium. When you live paycheck to paycheck, that’s a lot of money!”

Planned Parenthood advocates state this evening they believe Missouri legislators passed SB749 to undermine the incredibly popular proposal requiring most health insurance plans to cover birth control as preventive care with no additional co-pays.

Missouri Governor Jay Nixon vetoed the bill on July 12, and it was over-ridden today.

“As a trusted health care provider to one in five women in America, Planned Parenthood sees every day how important affordable birth control is for women,” said Paula Gianino, in a Planned Parenthood response.

“We know the overwhelming majority of Americans in the country agree that women should have access to birth control, no matter where they work. Today, our legislators ignored that message and told women loud and clear ‘your decisions don’t matter’. This legislature is out of touch and does not understand—or care—about increasing the economic burden for Missouri women.”

YOUR TURN:  What do you think about this development? Share your views in the comments' section of this article.

Jim Descher September 13, 2012 at 11:56 AM
Looks like an accurate headline to me. One more example of religion intruding into our lives in what should be a secular, private manner. Women, not their bosses, should be able to make their own healthcare decisions including those concerning birth control. Republicans: Get Out Of Our Bedrooms !
Kathleen Downes September 13, 2012 at 03:29 PM
This is not about Republicans being in the bedroom nor is about religion intruding into our lives, it's about private entities, whether religious or not, being able to decide how they will spend their healthcare dollars. Forcing a either a religious institution or even a private employer to provide and pay for a service which they believe to be morally reprehensible is against our religious freedoms. The choice one has is to leave employment at said place and get a job where they have no issues with paying for 'birth control' or abortion. There is no war on women, nor are they treated as second class citizens. Please observe how Muslim women are treated - that is truly a second class citizen or perhaps even third or beyond! The Republicans are not making healthcare decisions for the women, they are still able to obtain birth control, no one is stopping them from going down the street to a Planned Parenthood office! It seems it is OK to force someone to do something against their will if falls in line with what you want but turn the tables and oh how they scream!

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