Karla Gonzales García
Colorado has made incredible strides in improving access to healthcare. It is something to be proud of and yet there are so many who have been left behind. Too many women in my community don’t get the chance to manage their health and control their futures. Because our immigration system refuses them a piece of paper – documentation becomes the great divide between who gets to care for themselves and their families, who gets to decide when they become parents or build their families and who is denied care and support. This is simply unacceptable, so we are doing something about it.”
Right now, due to systemic obstacles, Latinas are twice as likely to experience unintended pregnancy. Ensuring access to contraception is critical to improving and strengthening the health, financial stability and dignity of the people of our state. This is why COLOR (Colorado Organization for Latina Opportunity and Reproductive Rights) is proud to lead an effort to advance legislation that proactively addresses obstacles that our undocumented communities face in getting the contraception they need to plan their families. This bill lays the groundwork to broadly improve access for people who typically struggle to get the services and supplies to plan their pregnancies.
Our bill takes on two very important goals: (1) include contraceptives for undocumented people through the state Medicaid program, and (2) enable people who use Medicaid to receive a one-year supply of oral contraceptives.
We should be doing all we can to eliminate barriers to health services and to address the ongoing and harmful inequities that continue to plague many in our communities. Immigrant women, transgender people, non-binary and gender non-conforming persons face huge roadblocks to reproductive health care. Women of color are dealing with high rates of pregnancy-related complications and maternal mortality. Low-income women and people in rural areas have a tough time obtaining contraception. This doesn’t just impact individuals. This is about the health and dignity of our communities.
This legislation is ambitious, forward-thinking and the right thing to do. It builds on the legacy we have set forth as a state where all people are treated with respect and actively working to close reproductive health disparities.
We have a chance to make things better. This legislation is ambitious, forward-thinking and the right thing to do. It builds on the legacy we have set forth as a state where all people are treated with respect and actively working to close reproductive health disparities.
We urge fellow advocates and activists to show up in support of this bill and our lawmakers to make progress by supporting this innovative and important piece of legislation. Together, we can take bold action to make sure every Coloradan has the ability to plan their families and their futures.
Karla Gonzales García, Policy Director of Colorado Organization for Latina Opportunity and Reproductive Rights (COLOR).
Read More Commentary: ELSEMANARIO.US
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