Jocelyn Foye, Director
Biden Budget Eliminates Harmful Hyde Amendment
The Womxn Project celebrates a budget that takes steps to ensure affordable abortion and commits to getting rid of bans here in Rhode Island and around the world!
(Providence, RI) – Statement by Jocelyn Foye, The Womxn Project on the release of the federal budget:
“We know that budgets are not just about numbers. They determine access to healthcare and funding for public education. They impact our roads and bridges and lives. It is often said that a budget is a statement of priorities. It shows what matters to people. Women should matter. Families should matter. Access to quality medical care should matter – and that includes abortion. The Biden Administration made some big commitments on the federal budget and today they came through on some big ones.
Today, President Biden released a budget that does NOT include the Hyde Amendment, a policy that specifically targets low-income people by denying health coverage for abortion for people who use Medicaid. This is the same kind of policy we have been fighting here in Rhode Island with the Equality in Abortion Coverage Act (S267/H5787).
We know that these policies mean that low-income women, especially women of color who are more likely to use this program to get their healthcare, do not had the same rights as people with money. Well today the Biden administration took a huge step forward by introduced a federal budget that does not include Hyde Amendment and also rolls back a rider that bans DC from spending its own money to provide abortions to low-income women.
Our communities are still trying to survive a pandemic. Black, Indigenous and other people of color, low-income families and people with disabilities in our state have been especially hard hit. It is more important than ever that we do all we can to ensure each of us makes a living wage, has a safe place to live and that everyone has access to the full-spectrum of health care they need, including abortion.
We are thrilled that this budget takes specific steps to help address the needs of low-income people and to close gaps in access to abortion. It is such important progress to put health before politics. It is cause for celebration, however, we are upset that the president continued to ignore the needs of people around the world who also need abortion care by also eliminating the Helms Amendment, a racist and colonial policy that denies millions of people access to abortion services. It is unconscionable that while people around the world continue to health from a pandemic that the US is continuing to impose this harmful policy.
The ability to get an abortion should not be limited by the type of insurance you use or how much money you have in the bank. It should not be determined by anti-choice politicians on the other side of the world who use international funding to take away access to information or care.
A budget is a moral document. We are heartened that the administration decided to come through for the needs of low-income people in the US, but very disappointed that the same commitment to health equity was not seen through for women and girls around the world.
Policies like the Helms and Hyde Amendments prevent millions of people, both in the United States and across the globe, from accessing the critical abortion care that they want and need and from making the reproductive decisions that are best for themselves and their families. Today we celebrate the moves forward and commit to doing all we can to build on this progress so that no matter where someone lives or how much money they have that they can get the full range of reproductive health services to care for themselves and plan their families and futures with dignity.”
Jocelyn Foye is available for interview by request.