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Women and Immigrants --- left on the sidelines of health care reform

Breaking News

Outrageous, that’s the phrase that came to mind as we watched the health care reform debates over the weekend. While health care reform passed a hurdle in the House of Representatives, women and immigrants were left on the sidelines.

What happened???

    •    In an effort to pass health care reform, Congress included an amendment that singled out and banned most abortions from all public and private health plans in the insurance exchange.  Women who think they may need an abortion in the future would be required to buy an additional insurance “abortion rider” with their own personal funds for coverage.

    •    Under the House bill, undocumented immigrants can buy into the public health insurance exchange with their own money. But, they are prevented from receiving any subsidies, affordability credits, or receive federal Medicaid.

    •    The 5-year ban on legal residents accessing public health benefits, including Medicaid, also remained intact.

Essentially politicians are saying that under current health care reform, women would have to plan for an unplanned pregnancy. 

Anti-choice activists know that the real goal of this amendment is to limit women’s access to abortion coverage in both public and private health insurance plans since many private plans may choose to deny coverage for abortions.  They even brazenly called the final House bill "a nail in the eventual coffin of Roe v. Wade."  (Christian Newswire)
And anti-immigrant forces are working day and night to strip out health care access for undocumented immigrants in the final bill that goes before the President for his signature.  In fact, the current Senate bill up for debate prohibits undocumented immigrants from using their own money to buy health insurance in the exchange, leaving millions without health care!
It’s not too late to demand real health reform for Latinas and their families.
CALL YOUR SENATOR. While we’ll be doing everything we can to protect the health and rights of Latinas and their families, your Senators need to hear directly from you.
Contact the Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121 to be directly connected to your Senator or contact their office directly.
SPREAD THE WORD. Tell your families and friends to do the same. Also, don’t forget to spread the word on Facebook, MySpace and Twitter!