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Black women leaders denounce HHS attack on Californian’s access to abortion care

Statement by In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda and Black Women for Wellness

Today, the Department of Health and Human Services threatened to withhold federal funding from California if the state does not remove its requirement that private health insurance plans include abortion coverage. Marcela Howell, founder and president of In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda, and Jan Robinson Flint, executive director of Black Women for Wellness, issued the following statement:

“In an effort to rally his anti-abortion voting base, President Trump issued yet another attack on reproductive health and rights. Congress has longed blocked access to abortion for poor and low-income women with the Hyde Amendment, which separates abortion care from other health care by prohibiting federal funding for those who get their health insurance coverage through the government. Now, the Trump administration seeks to block coverage for abortion care for those with private insurance. Today’s attack comes the same week that Black Women for Wellness introduces legislation to expand abortion access in the state.

“The attack on California’s requirement that private insurance plans cover the full range of pregnancy-related health care services, including abortion, is the latest of the administration’s efforts to undermine reproductive health care for all people. If they succeed, we can expect similar attacks against the five other states that mandate such coverage.

“Black women already face systemic barriers to accessing health care — especially reproductive health services. Nearly 90% of Black adults believe that abortion care should be included in both private and government-funded health care coverage. This latest assault will erect more hurdles that will further endanger our lives and the lives of our family members.

“In Our Own Voice and Black Women for Wellness stand with all women in California and across the country. We vow to continue our fight to ensure that every woman has the resources to make decisions about her own body regardless of her income, geography or insurance coverage.”



In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda is a national Reproductive Justice organization focused on lifting up the voices of Black women leaders at the national, regional and state levels in our ongoing fight to secure Reproductive Justice for Black women, femmes, queer, trans and gender non-conforming people and youth. Our strategic partners include Black Women for Wellness, Black Women’s Health Imperative, New Voices for Reproductive Justice, SisterLove, Inc., SisterReach, SPARK Reproductive Justice NOW, The Afiya Center and Women With A Vision.

Black Women for Wellness is a California-based organization committed to the health and well-being of Black women and girls through health education, empowerment and advocacy. We believe that we have the solutions, resources and responsibility to create the shifts and change needed to impact our health status.

Marcela Howell

In Our Own Voice: National Black Women's Reproductive

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