35 years of Hyde: Why the fight for true abortion access has only just begun

Today marks the 35th anniversary of the passage of the Hyde Amendment. The Hyde Amendment is a piece of legislation that effectively turned access to abortion into a class issue by banning the use of federal funding for abortions. The Hyde Amendment also cemented the marginalization of abortion from the rest of health care, lending a lot of weight to the climate around abortion we see today.

For those who don’t know, the Hyde Amendment restricts the use of federal funds toward abortion. Primarily this effects people whose health care is provided by the government: the low-income, the disabled and those in the military. That’s a lot of people who have to pay out of pocket for this procedure, and the burden is high.

The bottom line is that unless you live in one of the few states (it used to be many, and over the years has been whittled down) that puts its state dollars toward covering abortion care for low-income people, you are on your own. Most private insurance plans do cover the procedure, so it’s real discrimination toward those folks.

In honor (or possibly protest) of the anniversary today, we’re partnering with RH Reality Check and Advocates for Youth on a blog carnival. We’re asking folks to post about the anniversary of the Hyde Amendment today, their own experiences with accessing abortion, or anything else the topic inspires.

We’re inviting anyone in the Feministing community to post on the community site with their blog carnival contributions, and we’ll have other content from the carnival cross-posted there as well.

Let’s not let anyone forget how far we are from true access for all.

Two blogathon posts so far:

Thirty-Five Years After Hyde, It’s Time to Start a New Conversation on Abortion

The Hyde Amendment at 35: Lessons for Activists

and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.

4 Comments

  1. Posted September 30, 2011 at 11:03 am | Permalink

    I don’t think it’s accurate to say that “most private insurance plans do cover the procedure.” I’ve had 5 different insurance companies in 3 states over the last 12 years and not a single one covered any kind of abortion method.

    • Posted September 30, 2011 at 11:46 am | Permalink

      The official statistic is 87% of private insurance plans cover abortion (according to NARAL Pro-Choice America). Sorry that all of yours have been in that 13%.

    • Posted September 30, 2011 at 5:34 pm | Permalink

      My experience has been similar; of my 3 or so options for employer-subsidized insurance, none of them cover elective abortions.

  2. Posted September 30, 2011 at 5:32 pm | Permalink

    The study they cite on NARAL is from a Guttemacher Institute memo which says “… 87% of typical employer-based insurance policies in 2002 covered medically necessary or appropriate abortions.” “Medically necessary or appropriate” is not complete access for all who have private insurance- those in the magic 87% or not.

Feministing In Your Inbox

Sign up for our Newsletter to stay in touch with Feministing
and receive regular updates and exclusive content.

168 queries. 0.354 seconds