STATEMENT: New Supreme Court Birth Control Case Could Have Grave Health and Financial Consequences for American Women

This press release contains a correction.

Washington, D.C. — Today, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear Trump v. Pennsylvania and Little Sisters of the Poor Saints Peter and Paul Home v. Pennsylvania as a consolidated case. These cases combined represent a threat to the health and financial security that women have gained as a result of the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) expanded access to birth control. If the court decides in favor of the petitioners, then virtually any employer or university would be able to deny women access to birth control based on the employer’s religious or moral objection. Jamille Fields Allbrook, director with the Women’s Initiative at the Center for American Progress, released the following statement:

The Supreme Court’s decision today to grant cert may be the first step in allowing the Trump administration to achieve its goal of providing blanket religious and moral exemptions to any employer or university and depriving women of access to quality, affordable contraception. When more than 99 percent of women of reproductive age who are sexually active have ever used at least one contraceptive method, and with the high out-of-pocket costs for birth control, this development could have grave health and financial consequences for American women. In the months ahead, the court will demonstrate whether or not it is an institution devoted to the rule of law—or one devoted to advancing this administration’s political agenda.

Lower-court rulings at the district court and Court of Appeals levels have granted preliminary injunctions against the Trump rules in the 3rd and 9th Circuits.* The case that the court will be hearing originated out of the 3rd Circuit. In strongly worded opinions, the 3rd Circuit found that the rules were issued improperly.

Following the ACA, more than 61 million women currently have access to birth control with no out-of-pocket costs. Women have saved more than $1.4 billion in out-of-pocket costs on birth control pills per year since the ACA’s birth control benefit went into effect.

Related resources:

For more information or to speak with an expert, please contact Colin Seeberger at or 202-741-6292.

*Correction, January 17, 2020: This press release has been updated to accurately reflect the circuit courts that issued an injunction.