On Hyde Amendment’s 44th Anniversary, Center and Allies Call for its End

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Amendment Prohibiting Federal Coverage of Most Abortion Care Harms Marginalized Communities

09.25.2020

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Since 1976, the Hyde Amendment has institutionalized unequal access to reproductive health care by denying coverage of abortion care for people enrolled in Medicaid health insurance and other federal programs. On the 44th anniversary of Hyde, the Center and its allies call on Congress to exclude the amendment from future funding bills and end the harm it has caused.

The Center is working with other organizations, led by All* Above All, on a campaign to end this punishing policy, which undermines economic security, racial justice, and self-determination.

To learn more about this campaign, tune in to Ending Hyde: A Bold AF United AF Conversation, a livestreamed event on September 30, 2020 hosted by All* Above All and featuring reproductive rights advocates and members of Congress including Representatives Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) and Barbara Lee (D-CA). 

Hyde Amendment Harms Low-Income People and Many Other Americans

Year after year, Congressional lawmakers perpetuate inequalities in reproductive health care by attaching the Hyde Amendment to government funding bills.

Over the years, they have expanded the prohibition so that it bans abortion care coverage for many others, including federal employees, military personnel, federal prisoners, detained immigrants, and Native Americans.

The result has been a discriminatory system that inflicts its greatest harm on groups that already face obstacles to care, such as people of color, young people, transgender and non-binary people, and people who are struggling financially.

The consequences are extreme: The Hyde Amendment has forced one in four low-income women who would otherwise have had a Medicaid-funded abortion to carry an unwanted pregnancy to term, according to a summary of reports from U.S. states from the Guttmacher Institute.

The Center for Reproductive Rights and other rights groups have worked for many years to oppose laws and policies that limit coverage and restrict abortion care. Still, the amendment has survived congressional majorities and presidents of both parties, as well as a Supreme Court challenge (Harris v. McRae, 1980).

All* Above All works to build support for lifting the bans that deny abortion coverage and for ensuring that every person, whatever their income, can get affordable, safe abortion care. The Center is supporting All* Above All’s work with members of Congress to introduce an appropriations bill without the Hyde Amendment.

Learn more about the campaign to end the Hyde Amendment:

Ending Hyde: A Bold AF United AF Conversation

Wednesday, September 30 at 3 p.m. ET