Gov. Pat Quinn has signed a law to let voters weigh in on whether prescription insurance programs should be required to include birth control.
The question will appear on the Nov. 4 ballot.
“A recent U.S. Supreme Court decision has again brought the issue of women’s rights to the forefront,” Quinn said. “I think Illinois’ voters will agree that health care is a human right, and the Affordable Care Act is meant to give all Americans access to decent, affordable health care. That means full access to medical treatment for every woman in America, regardless of who they are or where they work. Women should be able to make their own health care decisions. This referendum will help continue the progress we’ve made to protect and empower women in Illinois.”
House Bill 5755 creates an advisory referendum asking whether any health insurance plan in Illinois that provides prescription drug coverage should be required to include prescription birth control as part of that coverage.
The action comes following the June 30 U.S. Supreme Court decision in the case of Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores Inc. That decision ruled that birth control measures can be excluded from employer-provided prescription drug coverage if such coverage is in opposition to the employer's religious beliefs.