Access to Contraception, Education and Information Critical for Women's Health
In a milestone for women's health, Representatives Louise Slaughter (D-NY), Jim Greenwood (R-PA), Diana DeGette (D-CO), and Nancy Johnson (R-CT) introduced today the "Putting Prevention First Act of 2004." This legislation seeks to guarantee women greater control over their lives and bodies by expanding access to preventive health services and education programs that reduce unintended pregnancy, infection with sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and the need for abortion.
This legislation comes at a time when reproductive rights are threatened by anti-choice ideologues in Congress and the administration. Access to family planning services and comprehensive sex education have become the casualties in the ongoing fight over a woman's constitutionally protected right to choose. As individuals in Congress and the administration advance their personal anti-choice agendas, women across the country suffer. By making reproductive health a political issue, the United States has grown to have one of the highest rates of unintended pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases among industrialized nations.
"Unfortunately, anti-choice extremists in Congress and the White House have turned reproductive health into a political issue," said Ralph G. Neas, president of People For the American Way. "They are so concerned with their own anti-choice agenda, they are not only undermining women's right to make personal decisions about their lives and families, but also threatening their health. We urge members of Congress to reverse this trend and support the Putting Prevent First Act of 2004."