FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – Tuesday, May 17, 2022
Contact: Jocelyn Foye, Director
The Womxn Project
More Than a Dozen Prominent National Groups Join Local Advocates in Pushing for Passage of the Equality in Abortion Coverage Act
With the possible fall of Roe v. Wade, the time is now to enact every policy possible to protect and expand access to care, including halting state bans on health coverage.
[Providence, RI] – Statement from The Womxn Project on the public launch of a letter signed by national reproductive health, rights, and justice organizations urging the Rhode Island legislature to pass the Equality in Abortion Coverage Act (EACA), which would include insurance coverage for abortion in the state Medicaid program and associated plans and include coverage in the insurance plan used by state employees:
“The Womxn Project is proud to be joined by the National Institute for Reproductive Health and more than a dozen national organizations representing hundreds of thousands of people from across the country in urging Governor McKee, House Speaker Joe Shekarchi, Senate President Dominick Ruggerio and the entire General Assembly to stop delaying on moving the Equality in Abortion Coverage Act (H7442/S2549). We know that the need is there — and so is the support among voters in our state and beyond.
Voters showed up in huge numbers in 2019 to push the Rhode Island General Assembly to pass the Reproductive Privacy Act, which was essential for protecting abortion rights in Rhode Island, but did not ensure access to care. Passing the EACA is fundamental to ensuring that all Rhode Islanders, particularly people of color and low-income people, have true and meaningful access to abortion care. We need to make this an essential priority for 2022 as a strong statement that we believe in ensuring the right is there for all Rhode Islanders – and help contribute to momentum to push back on the rampant attacks on our health decisions and bodily autonomy.
The Womxn Project is proud to work with SISTA Fire and to lead a robust campaign of more than 40 Rhode Island based organizations leveraging our collective strength to get rid of these harmful financial barriers. The addition of such an amazing set of national advocates who are truly experts and leaders in reproductive health, rights and justice makes the case even stronger to get this done this year.”
Local leaders, Jocelyn Foye and Ditra Edwards and representatives from the national groups signed on to the letter are available for interview upon request.
“Our fight for reproductive justice is a fight for the right to parent or not. SISTA Fire continues to fight for bodily autonomy, access to abortions, and our collective liberation until we have won.” Ditra Edwards, Co-founder and Director for SISTA Fire
“Right now, there are policies on the books in Rhode Island that take away health coverage for abortion for people who use Medicaid and state employees. It pushes care out of reach for many people in our state. It takes away the right to abortion that we worked so hard to protect. I don’t want to live in a community where the money you have in the bank determines if you get to have an abortion when you need one. No matter what kind of insurance you use, you should get to control your body and plan your family and future.” Jocelyn Foye, Director of The Womxn Project
“All Rhode Islanders should have access to abortion care, regardless of income or insurance status. Coverage bans on abortion care are discriminatory and dangerous. Especially in this incredibly urgent moment, elected representatives should always be serving the needs of their constituents, which includes ensuring meaningful access to abortion care. We are proud to be pushing for the passage of EACA in concert with our friends at SISTA Fire and The Womxn Project.” Andrea Miller, president of National Institute for Reproductive Health and its Action Fund
National organizations calling for the passage of EACA: National Institute for Reproductive Health, National Health Law Program, All* Above All Action Fund, American Society for Reproductive Medicine, National Abortion Federation, Physicians for Reproductive Health, Reproductive Health Access Project, In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda, National Institute for Reproductive Health, American Atheists, Center for Reproductive Rights, State Innovation Exchange, Catholics for Choice, and Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine.