Categorized | Government, News

Senator Akaka talks about White House policy on contraception coverage


Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Daniel K. Akaka issued the following statement today after the Obama administration announced a new health care rule guaranteeing women access to free contraception coverage through their employer while protecting the religious freedom of faith-based institutions:

“The President’s compromise accomplishes two important goals: protecting religious liberty, and making sure that all women have access to the fundamental health care they need. This compromise is modeled loosely off of Hawaii’s successful law, which ensures access to this preventative health care service. Institutions that object to contraception don’t have to pay for it, but no woman will be discriminated against based on where she works or what her occupation is.

“Under this compromise, women who work for religious organizations are not charged for these critical services, and the employers with conscience concerns are not required to discuss these options with their employees. In our experience in Hawaii, our contraceptive equity law does not appear to have impacted any insurance costs or coverage.”

According to a Guttmacher Institute study in 2006, 59 percent of all pregnancies in Hawaii were unintended. Across Hawaii, almost 150,000 women seek access to birth control every year. A little less than half, or 67,300, of Hawaii’s women in need of contraceptive care and supplies require financial assistance to obtain them.

President Obama’s briefing on contraceptive coverage

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