Reproductive freedom is an indispensable human right – a right that underpins every woman’s ability to live in dignity, to enjoy full and equal citizenship, and to pursue a healthy and fulfilling life. The right to control matters of reproductive health including, pregnancy, childbirth, contraception and abortion, enables a woman to take personal responsibility for her own life as well as her family’s well-being and security. In order to effectuate these life shaping decisions she must be able to have access to affordable health care.
Simply put, reproductive freedom lies at the heart of the promise of human dignity, self-determination, and equality. When a woman is denied these rights – including birth control, safe and legal abortion, as women once were, she is denied the means to protect her health and direct her own life.
Kate Michelman and Carol Tracy
Women have the potential to become pregnant for over thirty years of their lives, and most spend a significant amount of that time trying to avoid pregnancy.
- 99% of women ages 15-44 who have ever had intercourse have used at least one contraceptive method in their lifetime
- In 2008, only 47.6% of the need for subsidized contraceptive care services in PA was met
- Surveys found that women would use different, often more effective & longer-lasting contraception if they didn’t have to worry about cost
- Because emergency contraception doesn’t end a pregnancy but only prevents one, it is not a form of abortion. Emergency contraception prevents abortions
- A majority of teens will have sex at or before age 19 and studies show that abstinence-only programs do not stop or delay this