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The ACCESS Healthline provides free, confidential and nonjudgemental information, referrals, peer counseling, and advocacy on a full range of reproductive health services.
On one of our advocacy campaigns.
How the Maximum Family Grant Hurts Families
Originally posted in the Strong Families Mama's Day Our Way Blog
By Melissa Ortiz
My name is Melissa Ortiz. I am the mother of four children: 19-year-old James, 15-year-old Vanessa, and 14-month-old twins, Dominic and Gabriella. Dominic and Gabriella, are punished by the CalWORKs Maximum Family Grant rule. Being a mother is hard work, but I wouldn’t change it for all the wealth in the world. It is a gift for me to be in their lives and to help shape them from infants into adults. I was born to do this.
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Celebrating Civic Engagement and Reproductive Justice
Originally posted in Oakland Local on 4/5/13
By Samara Azam-Yu
With monumental news this morning of a federal court overturning the age restriction on access to emergency contraception, I am reflecting on victories, the work ahead, and the power of folks staying engaged to advance reproductive justice. Just last week, people from around California met with government representatives to make their voices heard during Reproductive Freedom Week, an annual advocacy event coordinated by the California Coalition for Reproductive Freedom.
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Pregancy Decisions Not About Income
Originally posted as a Letter to the Editor in the Oakland Trubine on 2/20/13
By Samara Azam-Yu, Executive Director
The amount of money a woman has or doesn't have should not be the main factor in making decisions about the outcome of her pregnancy, including abortion and giving birth.
In the State of the Union, President Barack Obama called on Congress to build stronger families, stronger communities and a stronger America. We also need to consider what the president himself can do.
At ACCESS, California women tell us every day on our healthline about how economic pressures and coverage issues impact their decisions around pregnancy.
Recently, a mother from a rural area with a very-wanted-yet-unviable pregnancy shared that her insurance would not cover the necessary termination, forcing her family to spend their limited savings on traveling a long distance and paying for the procedure out-of-pocket.
Accessing reproductive health care should not threaten any family's ability to provide and care for their children. While it was heartening to hear the president commit to economic parity for minimum-wage families, he must also ensure that every woman has coverage for a full range of pregnancy related care, including abortion, whether she is enrolled in government-funded or private health insurance.
Currently, lawmakers withhold coverage of nearly all abortions in the federal budget, penalizing women who qualify for government-funded health insurance. The president should stand up for these families and send a clean budget to Congress that lifts restrictions on coverage of abortion care for all women.