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Pallone Convenes New Jersey Health Leaders for Discussion on Misguided Hobby Lobby Decision

August 22, 2014
Press Release

LONG BRANCH, NJ – Today, Congressman Frank Pallone, Jr. (NJ-06) hosted an event with New Jersey health leaders to discuss the misguided Hobby Lobby decision by the Supreme Court earlier this summer and other women’s health issues.

Congressman Pallone, a senior Democrat on the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health, was joined by Jackie Cornell-Bechelli, Regional Director of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; Elizabeth Talmont, Chief Operating Officer of Planned Parenthood of Central and greater Northern New Jersey; Marta Cuellar Silverberg, Executive Director of the Monmouth Family Health Center; and Telma Cronin, a patient at the Women’s Wellness Center of Monmouth Family Health Center.

“Ensuring that women have access to comprehensive health care and full control over their reproductive health is one of my top priorities in Congress,” said Pallone.  “Unfortunately, the Supreme Court’s misguided ruling on the Hobby Lobby case is a huge setback for women’s health, since it puts a woman’s boss, not her and her doctor, in charge of her health care decisions.  This is unacceptable.”

In June, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc., saying that for-profit employers can opt out of providing contraception coverage under the Affordable Care Act due to religious objections. Congressman Pallone, who has been a tireless advocate for increasing women’s access to contraceptives and keeping them in control of their reproductive health, is an original co-sponsor of the “Not My Boss’ Business” bill, which was introduced by Democrats in July to address the Supreme Court’s misguided Hobby Lobby decision. 

The legislation, formally known as the “Protect Women’s Health from Corporate Interference Act of 2014,” would explicitly prohibit for-profit employers that maintain a group health plan for its employees from using religious beliefs to deny employees coverage of contraception or any other vital health service required by federal law.  House Republicans used a procedural vote to block consideration of the bill.