The issue of reproductive rights for the women in my community is not merely a matter of choice -- in many ways it is a matter of life and death. I believe that government officials have no place in the decisions made between a woman and her doctor. Yet, government must be part of a comprehensive approach to the issue of reproductive rights so that we give women and our health care providers all the resources they need to build a strong, productive community.
* Safe, Legal land Rare Abortions: While we can all do more to prevent unintended pregnancies and make abortion less necessary, I am 100% pro-choice and will continue to fight to protect a woman's right to a safe and legal abortion. All women - including at-risk low-income women - should have the same access to safe reproductive health services.
* Effective Birth Control: We must improve access to birth control in order prevent unintended pregnancy. Health insurance programs should completely cover prescription birth control.
* Family Planning Services. I will fight to ensure all of the women of my district have access to "Title X," which provides women with an array of reproductive-health services -- birth control, screening and treatment for sexually transmitted diseases, screening for breast cancer and hypertension, prenatal care, and postpartum counseling and well-baby care.
* Emergency Contraception: A woman's access to emergency contraception is critical to preventing unintended pregnancy when other birth control methods fail. EC is especially important for sexual assault victims.
* Education for All Women, Especially Women of Color: We know that women of color face a disproportionate set of obstacles in access to quality health reproductive health care. These include higher rates of teen pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), and HIV/AIDS infections. Because women of color constitute a majority of the women in my district, we need to redouble our efforts for age-appropriate, medically accurate sex education that uses a variety of tools that provides young people with the information they need to protect themselves. This includes increasing cultural and linguistic competency in the community and a comprehensive sex education program that covers abstinence, STDs, and birth control.