Too many obstacles have been placed in the way of women to prevent achievement of the American Dream. These obstacles must be knocked down. I have been a staunch advocate on women’s issues since my first day in Congress. I will never relent in my support for women to receive equal pay for equal work, or for women to be allowed to make health care decisions without government interference. The health care reform legislation helps ensure women get preventative care. Great strides have been made, but certainly more can be done. Looking forward, we need to ensure equality in the work place and in health care coverage, while also taking steps to combat domestic violence.
Among some of my accomplishments on women’s issues are:
-Voted for the Paycheck Fairness Act, to strengthen enforcement of prohibitions against discrimination and increase penalties for infractions.
-Helped enact the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act to restore the fundamental right of women and other workers to contest pay discrimination, giving them their day in court.
-Supported the new health reform law that prohibits insurers from charging women higher insurance premiums requires maternity services to be covered in the new insurance marketplace, and ends insurance denials for preexisting conditions such as pregnancy or child birth.
-Supported legislation to protect Roe v. Wade.
-Co-sponsor of the Freedom of Choice Act which recognizes a woman’s fundamental right to choose to bear a child, to terminate a pregnancy prior to viability, or to terminate a pregnancy after viability where termination is necessary to protect the life or health of the woman.
-Co-sponsor of the Prevention First Act, to eliminate barriers to preventive health care services that help reduce unintended pregnancy, reduce the number of abortions, and improve access to women's health care.
-Co-sponsor of the Breast Cancer and Environmental Research Act to direct the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences to make grants available for eight centers to study the environmental factors that may be related to the etiology of breast cancer.
-Supports fully funding for the programs authorized under the Violence Against Women Act and essential programs that help abused women.
-Co-sponsor of legislation to reauthorize the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act which provides grants to assist abused parents and their children.
-Supports increasing the cap on the Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) fund, which provides federal support to many state and local programs that assist victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, and other crimes.
-Co-sponsor of the Compassionate Assistance for Rape Emergencies Act, to require emergency contraception services be offered to victims of rape and sexual assault.
-Co-sponsor of the Military Domestic and Sexual Violence Response Act, which would establish in the Defense Department an Office of the Victims' Advocate to facilitate access to services for victims of domestic or family violence, sexual assault, and stalking in the military.