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Hawai‘i: U.S. Should Not Rescind ACA Contraception Coverage

December 7, 2017, 11:30 AM HST (Updated December 7, 2017, 11:30 AM) · 17 Comments
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Attorney General Doug Chin. Courtesy photo.

Attorney General Doug Chin announced that Hawai‘i has joined a letter authored by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, pressing Eric Hargan, acting secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, not to roll back the contraception coverage mandate that is part of the Affordable Care Act.

Interim final rules issued by DHHS would exempt employers from complying with the ACA’s contraception coverage mandate due to their religious or moral objections.

According to the letter that was sent Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2017, DHHS’s interim final rules violate the Administrative Procedure Act, the Equal Protection Clause and the Establishment Clause.

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“Unfortunately, the Trump Administration has embarked on a multi-pronged assault on women’s healthcare, and these final interim rules are part of that,” Attorney General Chin said.

According to the letter, “Access to contraception is fundamental to women’s rights to bodily freedom and to emotional autonomy. It is a public health issue, with effects on unintended pregnancy, maternal health and infant morbidity. It also implicates economic mobility and wage parity, educational opportunity and social equality. These far-reaching effects are too great to ignore, and are protected by the Constitution, our laws and regulations. Accordingly, we urge the secretary to rescind the [interim final rules].”

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