Day of the Girl-US Action Team Endorses EACH Woman Act
Young female activists support effort to lift bans restricting abortion as these limit girls’ and women’s abilities to make their own decisions about their bodies.
For Immediate Release
Friday, November 6 2015
Name: Eliana Stanislawski
Title: Campaign Chair
(Worcester, MA) Statement by Eliana Stanislawski, Campaign Chair on the EACH Woman Act:
This summer, the Equal Access to Abortion Coverage in Health Insurance (EACH Woman) Act was introduced to Congress by Representatives Barbara Lee, Diana DeGette, Louise Slaughter, and Jan Schakowsky (URGE, 2015). This piece of legislation is groundbreaking in its demand that politicians cannot interfere with a woman’s decision about abortion based on how much she earns or how she is insured (All Above All, 2015). Day of the Girl-US is proud to endorse this bill because of the way it will support young people, who are more likely to be low income and have trouble affording healthcare services - and who may experience distress regarding reproductive healthcare depending on the supports that are available to them in their communities.
When abortion coverage is restricted by the government, those living on the margins, such as youth, people of color, differently abled people, and more, are most negatively impacted. Denying access to safe, affordable abortions does not decrease the number of abortions taking place - it increases the health risks for the people undergoing the procedure, endangers their income, and frames a personal medical choice as public property. This is just another way for politicians to control the decisions of vulnerable groups and restrict their reproductive freedom, a despicable trend that has been going on in politics for decades. Under this bill, politicians would no longer be able to withhold coverage for abortion care. People could make their own reproductive choices, regardless of whether or not they can afford their own healthcare.
Reproductive justice is a girls’ issue, too. When we devalue the reproductive rights of young people we tell girls (and boys!) that they are not equipped to make their own decisions. We tell them that their bodies do not belong to them and expressing themselves sexually is shameful. We show them that they will continue to not have control over their bodies as they grow into adults. We cannot allow youth to be left out of this conversation and we cannot allow our government to strip youth of their reproductive rights. The EACH Woman Act is an important step, but a lot remains to be done.
The decision whether or not to become a parent is deeply personal. At Day of the Girl-US, we want girls to be able to be in charge of the decisions they make about their bodies and their futures without shame, rather than having that choice placed in the hands of politicians who disregard their needs or communities who may not respect their experiences. Abortion must not only be accessible financially, but it must be accessible. Abortion clinics need sustainable and consistent funding. A medical procedure cannot be allowed to carry this much stigma. And girls must not be denied the ability to control their bodies simply because they are girls.
Day of the Girl-US is an 100% youth-led movement committed to promoting the International Day of the Girl Child as a platform for change in the United States. In charge of this movement is the Day of the Girl-US Action Team, a group of young female-identifying activists who are passionate about gender justice and youth activism.