Rhetorical and legislative attacks this year on women’s health and reproductive rights—known as the war on women—have had real and dire effects on women and their families. These attacks have been waged across the country, whether through attempts to restrict women’s access to contraception or cut off funding for Planned Parenthood, through numerous state restrictions on abortion such as state-mandated, medically unnecessary ultrasounds and abortion waiting periods, or through prohibiting insurance companies from including abortion coverage in their policies. Despite these challenges and setbacks, women and health advocates have made their voices heard, fighting hard to protect their health and their rights. Here are 12 victories faith leaders have helped win in the fight for reproductive justice for all.
- Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, women have access to contraception at no cost, enabling them to make important decisions about becoming a parent according to their conscience.
- Religious leaders and denominations defend their support for family planning.
- Several states have moved away from abstinence-only programs toward more comprehensive sex education.
- The Unitarian Universalist Association made reproductive justice a denominational priority.
- The global United Methodist Church voted to support maternal health in the United States and around the world.
- Faith Aloud, a religious counseling organization, organized a prayer campaign to support women.
- Congress worked to ensure that women in uniform receive the same insurance coverage as the civilians they protect.
- Attempts to pass so-called personhood laws failed in all 11 states in which these laws were proposed.
- Faith leaders publicly condemned politicians’ extremist views on rape.
- Voters in Florida rejected an extreme ballot measure that would have restricted a woman’s access to health care.
- Women made their voices heard in the 2012 elections regarding health and reproductive issues.
- The voices of faith-based groups were stronger than ever in speaking out for women’s reproductive health.
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