Women are sending President Trump their birth control bills

Jennifer Gerson Uffalussy
Contributing Writer

Many women are none too thrilled about the Trump administration’s new rules that roll back the contraceptive mandate of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) — the part of Barack Obama’s health care bill that guaranteed insurance plans would cover all forms of prescription birth control with a zero-dollar co-pay for women — and, starting today, they are sending their bills straight to President Trump

Donald Trump on Oct. 23, 2017, in Washington, D.C. (Photo: Getty Images)

Keep Birth Control Copay Free campaign created a digital invoice generator for women to send the White House a bill for what birth control would cost should their employers move to end their no-cost contraception coverage.

One simply enters their FDA-approved form of prescription contraception, and the campaign’s online tool calculates the average annual cost — $600 for oral contraceptives, $800 for an implant, and $1,111 for an IUD.  And then the invoice generator immediately sends the bill to Trump and the Department of Health and Human Services.

Women at a birth control protest in Washington, D.C. (Photo: Getty Images)

Each invoice generated through the campaign’s tool will also be submitted to the Federal Register as an official comment opposing the new birth control rules. The comment period on the new rules will end on Dec. 5, 2017.

Kristen Bell, Gloria Steinem, Kate Walsh, Martha Plimpton, Sasheer Zamata, Ana Gasteyer, Margaret Cho, Franchesca Ramsey, and Cecily Strong are just some of the boldface names of women who have come out to endorse the campaign — and would really love for you to send an invoice to President Trump.

The cost of birth control pills is $600 per year. This is an example of the invoice the Keep Birth Control Copay Free campaign will send to President Trump. (Photo: Keep Birth Control Copay Free)

The ACA, known colloquially as Obamacare, made no-cost contraception accessible to 62.4 million American women, saving these women an estimated $1.4 billion annually.

“Women are tired of footing the bill for male politicians’ attacks on essential reproductive health care,” said Amy Runyon-Harms, the Keep Birth Control Copay Free campaign coordinator. “Together, we are pushing back against President Trump’s dangerous political decision to reduce access to birth control, and today we are sending him the bill.”

Polling released in March 2017 by nonpartisan research firm PerryUndem found that 75 percent of all voters consider birth control to be a part of preventive health care for women, with 85 percent of women voters in agreement with that.

Furthermore, 33 percent of women of reproductive age polled said they could not afford to pay more than $10 a month for birth control. Fourteen percent said they could not afford it at any price should they have to pay for it out of pocket today.

And 68 percent of voters said that Congress and President Trump’s top health care priority should be lowering people’s out-of-pocket costs — in other words, the exact opposite of what these new birth control rules stand to do.

Polling released this month by the Small Business Majority found that 71 percent of female small-business owners say health insurance issuers should be required to include birth control coverage in their health plans, with this majority opinion extending across all political, racial, religious, and age lines. And 56 percent of these women business owners said that the ability to access birth control and to decide if and when to have children allowed them to advance in their careers and start their own businesses.

However, Heritage Foundation research associate Melanie Israel told Yahoo Lifestyle this month that the Obamacare mandate was “onerous,” and a ”burden on employers, individuals, and religious organizations who, because of their beliefs concerning the protection of unborn human life, are faced with the decision to violate sincerely held religious or moral beliefs, pay steep fines, or forgo offering or obtaining health insurance entirely.”

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