The mission of NARAL Pro-Choice Minnesota is to develop and sustain a constituency that used the political process to guarantee every woman has the right to make personal decisions regarding the full range of reproductive choices, including preventing unintended pregnancy, bearing healthy children, and choosing legal abortion.
Women’s Rights and Health Reform:
As the national debate surrounding health insurance reform and implementation continues, NARAL Pro-Choice Minnesota is working to ensure that women’s reproductive rights are both protected and expanded during the legislative battle. As the healthcare exchange bill moves through the Minnesota state legislature, NARAL Pro-Choice Minnesota is working hard at the Capitol to guarantee that health insurance plans sold on the Minnesota healthcare exchange provide coverage for the full range of pregnancy related care, including abortion.
Responsible Sex Ed:
NARAL Pro-Choice Minnesota strongly supports medically accurate, age-appropriate, comprehensive sexuality education programs as a vital part of any adolescent pregnancy prevention and health promotion effort.
Sex Education Works
Comprehensive sexuality education programs that teach about both “abstinence and contraception, including condoms, do not increase sexual activity among teens; rather such programs often delay first intercourse, reduce the frequency of sex and reduce the number of sexual partners.”
Abstinence-Only-Until-Marriage Programs Do Not Work
A recent Minnesota Department of Health evaluation of the state’s own abstinence-only program, ENABL, found that sexual activity doubled among junior high school participants in the program at three schools between 2001 and 2002. The number of participants who said they would “probably” have sex during high school almost doubled as well.
Minnesota Parents Want Sex Education
A recent University of Minnesota survey found that 90% of parents want all schools to teach about how to prevent a pregnancy, birth control pills, condoms, family planning, and the role of preventing pregnancy and STIs.
Access to Abortion Care
NARAL Pro-Choice Minnesota believes in the fundamental right of all women to safe, legal abortion. This right should be guaranteed to all women, regardless of income, location, or insurance status and should be free of harassment, intimidation or government intrusion into this private medical decision.
While the anniversary of Roe v. Wade marks 40 years of reproductive freedom, anti-choice lawmakers continue to impose a broad range of restrictions on women and their doctors, making abortion difficult, and in some cases nearly impossible, to obtain. In Minnesota, 96% of counties have no abortion provider.
Affordable Family Planning
NARAL Pro-Choice Minnesota believes that access to affordable family planning care is a basic health care right. The Coalition strongly supports state and federal funding and policies that increase access to affordable, quality reproductive health care.
In Minnesota, the state’s Family Planning Special Projects program supports organizations that provide outreach, education, and services for family planning to 130,000 Minnesota families each year.
Family Planning Programs Really Work
The Alan Guttmacher Institute estimates that subsidized family planning services in Minnesota prevent 23,600 pregnancies each year. The availability of family planning services prevents unintended pregnancy and abortion, and saves the government substantial Medicaid costs. Family planning care also includes vital health care services such as annual exams.