AFT - American Federation of Teachers

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AFT Resolutions

BASIC PREVENTIVE CARE MUST INCLUDE CONTRACEPTION

WHEREAS, the American Federation of Teachers resolved in 1998 to commit to upholding the rights of women and men in the area of reproductive choice and quality healthcare; and

WHEREAS, the American Federation of Labor resolved on December 6, 2001, to work with the government to ensure that contraceptive coverage was included in healthcare plans just as other drugs, devices and preventive care were covered; and

WHEREAS, covering contraception does not raise healthcare costs and may help reduce employee absenteeism and medical costs related to unintended pregnancies; and

WHEREAS, providing contraception as a covered health benefit ensures fewer unintended pregnancies, healthier women and stronger families; and

WHEREAS, President Obama's Affordable Care Act recognizes that birth control is basic healthcare for women and states that insurers must cover all prescribed FDA-approved contraceptives; and

WHEREAS, nearly all women of reproductive age use contraception, including 98 percent of Catholic women, despite opposition by religious leaders; and

WHEREAS, extremists demanding no birth control coverage in the name of religious freedom held a congressional hearing in February 2012 at which they allowed no women or dissenting witnesses to speak, and insisted that employers be allowed to deny healthcare coverage to their employees based on their personal beliefs:

RESOLVED, that the American Federation of Teachers will affirm its position that reproductive healthcare, including contraception, is basic healthcare for women and must be covered as a preventive health service; and

RESOLVED, that the AFT will oppose efforts to restrict healthcare coverage on the grounds of religious freedom; and

RESOLVED, that the AFT will affirm the right of all employees to make their own personal healthcare decisions regarding reproduction and other health issues; and

RESOLVED, that the AFT will recognize the denial of contraceptive coverage as discrimination against women and an attack on workers' right to basic health coverage; and

RESOLVED, that AFT members, officers and locals will utilize collective bargaining and other appropriate methods to gain coverage for contraception without copay in all workplaces as part of the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, and will actively oppose legislation that restricts contraceptive coverage; and

RESOLVED, that the AFT will reaffirm its commitment to advocate for contraceptive coverage as basic preventive healthcare for women at union meetings, women's committees, civil and human rights committees, local and community meetings, media events and other places; and

RESOLVED, that the AFT will urge the AFL-CIO to be visible and vocal in support of working women's right to preventive healthcare, including contraception coverage without copay, as part of the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, and will urge the AFL-CIO to use its resources to oppose legislation that restricts contraceptive coverage.


(2012)