A Plan for Real Choice
In the face of the immediate threat to Roe vs Wade, Josh will pursue federal strategies to protect women’s right to make their own reproductive decisions, whether that is the choice to pursue abortion care or the choice to keep a pregnancy. Our current system forestalls any real choice: while abortion and adoption are the right choice for some people, other people in an unplanned pregnancy have their hands forced because chosing to parent is medically and financially unfeasible. Every child should be a loved and wanted child, and every child should have access to care and support. In order to build a system that truly supports real choice, we must:
- Pass the Women’s Health Protection Act or a similar piece of legislation that would enshrine the protections of Roe vs. Wade into federal law.
- Pass a permanent family and medical leave law such as the Family and Medical Insurance Leave (FAMILY) act, to protect the 80% of private-sector workers who currently have no access to paid leave to care for a new child.
- Expand Medicaid to cover pregnant people throughout pregnancy and through the first year after pregnancy. Virginia has led the way for postpartum Medicaid expansion: these rights need to be extended to people across the US.
- Expand sustainable funding streams to community-based organizations to help improve maternal health and mortality rates. These CBOs support birthing parents during and after pregnancy and have helped facilitate a dramatic drop in the maternal mortality rate, particularly for women of color.
- Increase federal support for equitable access to quality child care.
- Create federal statutory rights that protect safe and accessible abortion care and prevent states from interfering in the right to access medical care, including abortion services.
- Ensure that private health insurance providers must cover a full range of contraceptive methods without out-of-pocket costs for patients.
- Streamline the existing federal adoption subsidies, and expand programs to help families adopt children with medical needs or sibling relationships that make them more difficult to place.
Ultimately, both for parents and for people deciding whether or not to become parents, we must build a culture that supports the choice to have children by supporting those children and their families after they’re born.