Testimony: Georgetown Law Student Couldn't Afford Contraception--At School Surrounded by Planned Parenthood Clinics Distributing Condoms

Penny Starr | February 24, 2012 | 12:36pm EST
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Sandra Fluke, a 'reproductive rights' student activist at Georgetown Law School, spoke at a hearing on Feb. 23, 2012 about how fellow students cannot afford contraceptives. (CNSNews.com/Penny Starr)

(CNSNews.com) – Georgetown Law School student Sandra Fluke told the Democratic Steering and Policy Committee on Thursday that a fellow female student at the law school-who is married--had to stop using contraception because she and her husband could not afford it.

There are three federally funded Planned Parenthood clinics in Washington, D.C.--none being more than 3.2 miles from the Georgetown Law School.

“Just last week, a married female student told me that she had to stop using contraception because she and her husband just couldn’t fit it into their budget anymore,” said Fluke, who was asked to speak by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), who said Fluke was denied the opportunity to appear last week at another hearing focused on religious freedom.

“Women employed in low-wage jobs without contraceptive coverage face the same choice,” Fluke said.

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Yet, according to the Web sites of the three Planned Parenthood clinics located in Washington, D.C., condoms “cost about $1 each, but are sometimes available for free.”

The three Planned Parenthood clinics are located between 1.2 and 3.2 miles from Georgetown Law School, according to Google maps.

“And some might respond that contraception is accessible in lots of other ways,” Fluke said on Thursday. “Unfortunately, that’s just not true.

“Women’s health clinics provide a vital medical service, but as the Guttmacher Institute has definitely documented, these clinics are unable to meet the crushing demand for these services,” Fluke said. “Clinics are closing, and women are being forced to go without the medical care they need.”

Fluke spoke out on Thursday in favor of the Obama administration HHS regulation that mandates that all health-care plans in the United States cover sterilizations and all FDA-approved contraceptives including those that induce abortions.

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