WASHINGTON D.C. — Yesterday, the White House issued an executive order that allows for the expansion of association health plans and short-term health insurance plans without the key consumer protections of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Furthermore, in a separate decision, the administration announced that it would scrap federal payments for subsidies that help low-income people afford health coverage. National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum Executive (NAPAWF) Director Sung Yeon Choimorrow issued the following statement in response:
“As if last week’s rule allowing employers to deny women access to birth control wasn’t enough, this administration has now decided to go even further in attacking the right to healthcare of women and marginalized communities. This executive order will allow insurance companies to sell bare-bones health plans that eliminate critical services and will cause premiums to skyrocket for those who need healthcare the most. Among the list of critical services these plans would cut are maternity and newborn care, birth control and coverage for preexisting conditions.
“The administration then went another step further by eliminating cost-sharing reductions that help millions of low-income Americans access healthcare without paying out-of-pocket. This cruel decision is a blatant attack on poor, marginalized communities — on women of color who rely on these subsidies to survive.
“Under the ACA, the percentage of uninsured Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs) halved and millions of AAPI women gained no-cost coverage for preventive services, such as cervical cancer screenings. AAPI women, many of whom are immigrants, already face immense barriers to accessing basic preventive services, birth control and maternal care. They also comprise a higher proportion of the low-wage workforce and simply cannot afford to pay absurd costs for life-saving care. Cutting healthcare access, especially for the most vulnerable, is immoral.
“Reproductive justice will not be achieved until individuals can freely choose if, when and how to parent, and to do so without immense economic burden. NAPAWF will continue to oppose and fight the immoral actions taken by this administration and all attacks on the dignity and freedom of women, girls, trans and gender nonconforming people of color.”
The National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum(NAPAWF): NAPAWF is the only multi-issue, progressive, community organizing and policy advocacy organization for Asian American and Pacific Islander women and girls in the U.S. NAPAWF’s mission is to build a movement to advance social justice and human rights for Asian American & Pacific Islander (AAPI) women and girls.