Bill would require most Indiana employers to offer contraceptive coverage

Contraception. (WISH Photo)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Do you think most employers in Indiana should be required to cover contraceptive care?

One state lawmaker is working on legislation that would prevent an employer from opting out of contraceptive care, with the exception of churches or groups controlled by or strongly affiliated with a church.

Current legislation requires any Indiana employer insurance governed by state law to cover contraceptive care, unless that employer is a religious organization or has a moral objection and decides to opt out.

“Which would mean that if a woman wanted to purchase birth control and she worked for an employer that opted out, that she would now have to pay for that birth control out of her own pocket,” state Sen. Jean Breaux, a Democrat from Indianapolis, explained.

“I am just trying to offset what’s happening at the federal level and make sure that women have the right to access contraceptive care, if they choose to engage in that as part of any kind of regular family planning program,” Breaux said.

In October, President Donald Trump issued an executive order allowing more employers to opt out of providing no-cost birth control to women by claiming religious or moral objections.

“It seems like all bills are uphill battle to start. Are there going to be detractors? Sure. Is there going to have to be work done to get this bill passed? Absolutely. Am I prepared to do it? Yes I am,” Breaux said.

“We’ve seen, some employers, since the exemption’s been put in place, probably a handful, have contacted us and have had discussions about whether or not they should continue to offer contraceptive coverage,” Andy Vetor, an employer insurance expert with MJ Insurance, told 24-Hour News 8.

Vetor said “I think you may see a few employers that would have objection to this law.”

Employees wondering where their employers stand on coverage of contraceptive care should ask their workplace human resources professionals, Vetor said.

WISH-TV tried to contact several Republican state senators to get their reaction to the proposal. None were available for comment.