A Georgia court on Monday ruled that the state is not required to pay for medically necessary abortions for poor women through Medicaid. Seven Georgia clinics, represented by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), had submitted an emergency request to cover abortions under Medicaid that are deemed necessary to protect a woman's health, basing their claim on the Georgia State Constitution's rights to privacy and equal protection. "We are not asking for special treatment for abortion, only that abortion be covered as all other medically necessary care," said Debbie Seagraves, executive director of the ACLU of Georgia, in a press statement.
The Hyde Amendment of 1976 excludes abortion from the health care services provided to low-income people by the federal government through Medicaid. Currently, the federal Medicaid coverage of abortions to cases of rape, incest, and to save the life of the woman. Sixteen states cover medically necessary abortions under Medicaid, and 13 of these states were ordered to do so by the courts. "We are disappointed," said Leola Reis, a vice president of Planned Parenthood of Georgia, one of the plaintiffs in the case. "However, this is just the first step in a lengthy legal process, and we remain optimistic that the court will ultimately protect poor women's health," she said, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
A recent Georgia Legislative Poll shows that almost 70 percent of registered voters in Georgia support coverage of medically necessary abortions under Medicaid, according to the ACLU.
2/27/2015 This Bipartisan Bill Will Hold Colleges Accountable for Ending Campus Sexual Assault - A bipartisan bill aimed at holding colleges and universities accountable for rape and sexual assault cases was introduced in Congress yesterday, spearheaded by Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY).
Some of the Campus Accountability and Safety Act's key key provisions include a requirement of confidential reporting systems on colleges and universities, minimum training requirements for campus personnel, and stricter penalties for schools found to be in violation of Title IX or the Clery Act. . . .
2/26/2015 If This Bill Passes Federal Law Will Add Consent to Sex Ed Curriculums - Right now, federal law does not require health or sex education to include sexual assault prevention - but that could change with a new bill introduced by Senators Claire McCaskill (D-MO) and Tim Kaine (D-VA).
The Teach Safe Relationships Act of 2015, which was introduced earlier this month, would require all public secondary schools in the country to include teaching "safe relationship behavior" in order to help prevent domestic violence and sexual assault. . . .