Women weigh in on ‘no-cost’ birth control under new ACA rules

Women weigh in on ‘no-cost’ birth control under new Affordable Care Act rules

August 1, 2012

Jewell Washington

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August 1st is the first day for new provisions under the Affordable Care Act, including a requirement for health insurance companies to provide birth control without a co-pay or deductible. WBEZ surveyed a variety of women to get their reactions.

Viola Harrell was exercising along 31st Street Harbor Wednesday morning. She said employers should have been required to give free contraceptive coverage a long time ago.

“We bear everything,” she said. “We have to be the nurses, the doctors, the lawyers, the teachers, everything and so if we’re not taken care of then what are the men gonna do?”

“It shouldn’t be an issue if I’m working hard and I don’t want a baby yet,” Chineseo Okoro said.

Okoro said she is a practicing Catholic. But other Catholics think abstinence is the best birth control and don’t like the new rule.  

“I don’t believe that the government should mandate anybody’s beliefs especially if it’s a religious organization,” said Kathleen Long, while leaving noon mass at Holy Name Cathedral. “You can’t tell them what they believe is wrong just because this is the flavor of the day.”

Employers who don’t offer contraceptive coverage in their insurance plan, due to religious beliefs, have an extra year to comply with the new law.