BPW has always been about women’s pocket book issues. Women pay more for health care than men because we get pregnant. Insurance companies treat pregnancy and family planning as a disease instead of a celebration of life. Colorado passed a law that requires all employer-offered health plans to include pre-natal care and birth control for women. But that law doesn’t cover women who are buying individual policies when their employers don’t offer health insurance to employees.
If I were still president, I’d be leading an effort to educate woman about how they are being treated unequally, and how important it is to have pre-natal care covered in all policies. Insurance companies base their premiums on the likelihood of claims and their cost of doing business, including the huge salaries that we’ve been reading about in news reports of executive compensation. If they can offer a separate policy to cover pre-natal care, one that is only purchased by women of child-bearing age, the premiums on that policy will be much higher than they would be if old ladies, like me, and men were also in the pool of premium holders.
I understand wanting to move a bill forward, but it is just plain wrong to continue treating young women as second class citizens. They already get paid less for their work, even though that is supposed to be illegal. And now with those smaller paychecks they are being asked to pay more than men for their insurance. I’d be willing to bet that those insurance lobbyists who were shuffling their papers in the linked story aren’t complaining about covering Viagra, but they lobby against family planning for women. I’m mad as hell.