The Ohio House Insurance Committee heard sponsor testimony Tuesday on House Bill 351, legislation to limit insurance coverage options for women seeking reproductive health care. State Rep. and Democratic Women’s Caucus Chair Nickie J. Antonio (D-Lakewood) joined Democratic lawmakers in chiding the GOP for their prioritization of policies that would limit Ohio’s women access to safe and affordable health care options, including birth control. 

“We should focus our attention on strategies to improve Ohio’s lackluster job creation rate and increasing services to underserved communities, but the GOP would rather devote time to hearing egregious bills that would jeopardize women’s ability to make their own personal health decisions and send us back to the 1950s,” said Rep. Antonio. “This obsession with limiting women’s equality through extreme, restrictive measures further showcases the Republicans’ misplaced priorities and mentality that is out-of-touch with Ohio families.”

HB 351, introduced by Rep. John Becker (R-Union Township), would prohibit public and private insurance plans and Medicaid from covering IUDs, birth control pills, emergency contraception and abortion care services; redefine abortion to include commonly-used forms of birth control; and prohibit public hospitals from performing abortions in cases of rape, incest or to save a woman’s life, amongst other provisions.

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