January 13, 2009

Washington – Today, the American Civil Liberties Union applauded Representatives Louise Slaughter (D-NY) and Diana DeGette (D-CO) for introducing H.R. 463, the Prevention First Act, legislation aimed at improving access to reproductive health care and preventing unintended pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases. The ACLU also appreciates Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's (D-NV) leadership for sponsoring the companion bill, S. 21, which was introduced in the Senate last week.

"The Prevention First Act is a commonsense measure designed to protect the reproductive health of all women,” said Caroline Fredrickson, director of the ACLU Washington Legislative Office. “This legislation is critical to the goal of expanding access to contraceptives and sexuality education. These mainstream proposals go a long way toward improving the lives of all women. The Prevention First Act deserves bipartisan support in the 111th Congress."

ACLU Legislative Counsel Vania Leveille added, “Access to sexuality information and education, as well as to safe and effective contraception, is a critical component of basic health care. When women have the information and the means to decide whether and when to become a parent, they are empowered to make the best decisions for themselves and their families.”

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