Bush Undermines Women’s Access To Reproductive Healthcare And Connecticut's Attorney General Fights Back

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

December 19, 2008

On Thursday, December 18, 2008 the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued a final regulation that could undermine women’s access to essential health-care services, including birth control. The regulation expands the universe of individuals and institutions that are explicitly afforded refusal rights, it allows individuals to refuse to give referrals and information about a broad range of services, and it fails to take into consideration laws that protect patient’s rights.

The HHS regulation is also deliberately vague in defining abortion. An earlier leaked version of the regulation defined abortion to include birth control explicitly. While the final version fails to provide any definition of abortion, secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, Michael Leavitt has said that "this [final] regulation does not seek to resolve any ambiguity in that area”.

On the same day that the final regulation was issued, Connecticut’s Attorney General, Richard Blumenthal announced that he is preparing to fight the federal regulation. In particular, this regulation threatens a 2007 Connecticut law that requires Connecticut’s hospitals to offer and provide victims of rape with emergency contraception. Attorney General Blumenthal said that "this new rule puts personal agendas before patient care—protecting doctor objections, but entirely ignoring the rights of rape victims and others to access birth control and other vital services”.

NARAL Pro-Choice Connecticut (NPCC) will support any and all efforts to repeal this eleventh-hour attack on reproductive freedom. NPCC Executive Director, Jillian Gilchrest said, "I am extremely proud of our Attorney General and all those who are working to make sure that women have access to medically accurate healthcare services and information”.

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Rob Kavaler

Rob joined GPS in June 2014, and brings his knowledge of graphic design, photography, social media and other digital media to the firm. Before joining the team, Rob worked as a freelancer for various businesses and organizations in the Greater Hartford area including The Open Hearth Association, Charter Oak Cultural Center, Center for Higher Education Retention Excellence (CHERE) and the West Hartford Summer Arts Festival. Kavaler has designed logos, event programs, brochures, newsletters, posters and other collateral materials. He has photographed events including news conferences, public hearings, concerts, theatrical performances and dance showcases. As a creative person he is always looking for a new challenge, enjoys working closely with clients and strives for the best quality in his work. Rob graduated from Eastern Connecticut State University with a B.A. in Visual Arts, with a concentration in Digital Art & Design and a minor in Communication.