Personal PAC's Positions on Protecting Women's Health

Summary of Positions

Personal PAC believes that decisions about a woman’s reproductive health are extremely private and are best decided by a woman, her doctor and her conscience. Not Politicians.

Access to contraception and safe, legal abortion is the only way to guarantee a woman’s reproductive health. Abortion has been singled out as the only medical procedure to require unfair and unsafe restrictions. We oppose regulations and restrictions designed to prevent access to abortion because restrictions on access put women’s health and lives at risk.

Mandatory Waiting Periods

Personal PAC believes that mandatory waiting periods are dangerous and discriminatory.

The restriction requires a woman to wait 24 to 48 hours or more after signing a consent form. This forces rural women to make at least two long journeys to the nearest provider. For low-income women this means having to miss work or school twice, posing a significant obstacle to the health care that they need. Abortion is the only medical procedure in which this restriction is imposed. Mandatory waiting periods are insulting to women and question their decision-making ability.

Misinformed Consent

Personal PAC is against the requirement of misinformed consent.

Misinformed consent is a state-mandated lecture of anti-abortion propaganda that must be given to a woman seeking an abortion. The lecture completely distorts the nature of the procedure, the alternatives and the side effects. Receiving this lecture is often humiliating for the woman, who may already be facing a difficult decision. Much of the information given is not medically accurate and is meant solely to scare her and to dissuade her from having an abortion.

Teen Endangerment Laws

Personal PAC believes that mandatory parental notification endangers the lives of young women.

Teen endangerment laws require teenagers to give notice to their parents prior to an abortion.

Teens from homes with healthy communication almost always involve an adult family member in the abortion decision. However, notice laws have horrifying consequences for teens from homes where there is violence, abuse, drug addiction, alcoholism and lack of parental involvement. It is equally endangering for teens from stable homes who nonetheless attempt to self-induce abortion rather than tell a parent about the pregnancy.

Some states offer a judicial bypass option, giving teens an option to seek permission from a judge to move forward with the abortion without informing a parent or guardian. However, this option is a cruel hoax for an already fragile teen, presenting her with many additional logistical hurdles and adding to the existing trauma of an unwanted pregnancy. Historically, some teens are so frightened they choose to have an illegal abortion.

Additionally, some teens’ parents try to force a teenager to have an abortion against her will. This is a nightmare brought on by such laws, for both the teen and the health care provider.

Low-Income Women’s Access

Personal PAC believes that abortion should be safe, legal and accessible to all women, regardless of income.

When states prohibit funding of abortion for women otherwise eligible for state assistance for general health care, access to safe options for low income women’s reproductive health is severely restricted. These restrictions leave little choice for women who cannot afford an abortion.

Emergency Contraception

Personal PAC believes that emergency contraception should be available immediately to all women without a doctor’s prescription, regardless of age.

Emergency contraception is completely safe and prevents conception from occurring. If a woman takes emergency contraception within five days after unprotected sex or failed birth control methods, her chances of becoming pregnant are reduced by upward of 90%. Making emergency contraception available over-the-counter and otherwise widely accessible are highly effective ways to reduce the rate of abortion and unintended pregnancy. Given the safety of emergency contraception medication, requiring a doctor’s prescription is an unnecessary barrier for women trying to prevent unintended pregnancy.

Emergency Room Emergency Contraception (EC) Mandates

Personal PAC believes that providing emergency contraception or information about how to obtain emergency contraception to sexual assault survivors in hospital emergency rooms is vital.

Most women are unaware of emergency contraception and would not know that such an option is available following a sexual assault. Failing to provide EC to women in the hospital emergency room adds gross insult to horrible injury.

Contraceptive Equity

Personal PAC supports Illinois’ Contraceptive Equity Law.

Other states do not require insurance companies to cover prescription contraceptives despite the fact that these same insurance plans cover other prescriptions, such as Viagra. With a contraceptive equity law, insurance companies that provide prescription coverage are required to cover FDA approved contraceptive prescriptions.

Stem Cell Research

Personal PAC supports the important role that embryonic stem cells can play in potentially lifesaving medical research.

The anti-abortion movement has made a top political priority of preventing stem cell research in as many states as possible. They do so in order to establish as law that life begins at conception, and any use of post-conception material should be treated as murder and considered a felony.

Anti-abortion opposition to stem cell research, like opposition to abortion, is based solely on extremely narrow religious dogma, not on science or rational public policy.

Comprehensive Sex Education

Personal PAC supports honest, age-appropriate, medically accurate sex education that provides young people with the information they need to protect themselves.

Research shows that honest, medically accurate sex education works.

“Abstinence-only” programs aren’t proven effective, and some studies even show that young people who go through these programs are less likely to use contraception and protect themselves when they become sexually active. Making matters worse, many of these “abstinence-only” programs include blatantly false and inaccurate information. There is overwhelming public support for honest sexuality education.

Pro-Choice. No Exceptions. No Compromise.

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The opponents of choice never stop their assault on women’s rights. Every generation has to fight. And in every generation, Personal PAC will be there. Help us protect women today, tomorrow, and for years to come.

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