Call on Governor to Take Action On Legislation Sitting on His Desk for 32 Days
(TRENTON) — Assemblywomen Linda Stender, Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Pamela R. Lampitt and Celeste M. Riley — the Assembly sponsors of legislation (A-3273 & A-3274) that would restore funding for women’s health care in New Jersey — issued a multimedia package Friday urging the governor to enact the legislation that has been languishing on his desk since winning Legislative approval on Dec. 20.
The multimedia package consists of a video of the Assemblywomen urging the governor to take action and audio and a transcript of same.
The audio file is available upon request.
A transcript of the Assemblywomen’s comments is appended below:
Assemblywoman Linda Stender (D-Union):
“The State of New Jersey has been funding family planning services, which is an investment in women’s health, since the ’70’s. This year, for the first time, Governor Christie, because of his ideology, turned his back on the women of the State of New Jersey and eliminated that funding.”
Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen), Assembly Human Services Committee Chair:
“These clinics are not only for women, although the do serve 136,000 women, but they include some men, and of course it’s for families. These women that lost their jobs, that can’t afford insurance — whether they have insurance, or they don’t have that type of coverage — they can go for proper screenings. They can go for mammographies, diabetes screenings and other services that are vital to a woman’s health.”
Assemblywoman Pamela R. Lampitt (D-Camden):
“What’s happening now is that we have centers that are closing. What’s happening now is that centers that are shortening their hours. And they’re not saying ‘Let’s do more with less.’ They’re not opening their doors for extended periods of time, to allow easy access and access for women.”
Assemblywoman Celeste M. Riley (D-Cumberland):
“So if there is a test or a screening that they need, they won’t have it. If there is birth control that they need, they won’t get it. And so, their quality of life will now be in danger.”
“And what we’re doing is, we’re asking for the Governor to look at this from aspect of funding — not the ideology — and be able to fund health care for women in the State of New Jersey.”
“We’re putting legislation in front of him that requires his signature, so he can prove that it’s not about ideology. If he turns his back on these pieces of legislation, than it’ll just be a… it’ll underscore what we sadly already know, which is that this governor has turned his back on the women of the State of New Jersey and doesn’t trust women to make health care decisions and reproductive decisions about… in their lives.”
“It’s this basic: if a woman has limited access to good health care, she is not in control of her life.”
“There’s no doubt that we’re facing economic challenges but, again, we found the money and I think we can afford something like $16 a person to save someone’s life.”