Media

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Government needs to deliver of promise of free contraception

Castanet, October 4, 2022

In the last provincial election I celebrated that all parties promised free contraception for women. That was something that everyone could agree on. It is something I have continued to ask for, formally as (B.C. Liberal) health critic and now as the critic for gender, equity and diversity. I am disappointed the NDP government has had six years to deliver on its promise and it hasn’t yet. Which is why I will continue to press Health Minister Adrian Dix on this (issue). Why is it so important? Equity.

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The Abortion Episode (Part Four): Free Birth Control For All 

The Tea with Laura and Rachele Podcast, Oct. 4, 2022

In this episode we have very special guest Dr. Teale Phelps Bondaroff joining us to discuss the importance and benefits of provinces providing free birth control to all Canadians. His experience in policy writing at all government levels has lead the charge on AccessBC holding the NDP government accountable to fulfilling their promise of providing free contraction to all BC residents. In this episode listeners will be inspired to take action to have universal coverage across Canada.

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The Abortion Episode (Part Three): Reproductive Justice + the Facts on Abortion Procedures & Contrac

The Tea with Laura & Rachele Podcast, September 7, 2022

In this episode we have very special guest Dr. Ruth Habte joining us. She is an OB/GYN Resident out of University of British Columbia and Campaign Organizer for AccessBC. In this discussion Dr. Ruth defines reproductive justice and how prevalent it is in Canada's health care system. She highlights both sides of the conversation as the Right to Parent and the Right to Not Parent. It's shocking how many people are not allowed to make this choice for themselves. There are also several barriers to access for contraception and abortion.

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AccessBC: The case for no-cost contraception in British Columbia

BCMJ, September 7, 2022

"Doctor, can I have a Mirena IUD? I can’t afford to get pregnant again,” asked a postpartum patient who had multiple adverse conditions in pregnancy. “Of course, let’s chat about it,” I replied. “You don’t understand, my OB said she might be able to get me one for free.”

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BCFS endorses campaign for free contraceptives in B.C.

The Runner, August 27, 2022

The British Columbia Federation of Students (BCFS) has endorsed the AccessBC campaign to provide every British Columbian with better access to contraceptives. AccessBC, a campaign that began in 2017, calls on the B.C. government to lower the cost of contraceptives so everyone in the province can access it, regardless of their income. 

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Structural racism in healthcare

Aborsh Podcast, July 21, 2022

In this episode, Rachel and her guests continue to discuss reproductive justice, or rather the ongoing in-justices and structural racism in the Canadian healthcare system, and specifically in regards to anti-Black racism. Featuring Dr Tunde-Byass, an OB-GYN and president of the Black Physicians of Canada, who connects a throughline between the historical legacies of slavery and segregation to the continued racial disparities we see today. And Dr Ruth Habte, a 4th year OB-GYN resident explains why universal cost coverage for contraception is an integral pillar of reproductive justice and choice.

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Roe v. Wade overturned, bringing B.C.'s reproductive access into focus

BurnabyNow, June 24, 2022

“The news coming out of United States is horrifying,” Teale Phelps Bondaroff, chair and co-founder of AccessBC, told Glacier Media in May following the leaked Supreme Court draft opinion.
 

“When we see a draft opinion, like the one that we saw in United States coming forward that fundamentally undermines a person's right to choose what happens to their body, we have feelings of outrage and frustration and horror and anger.”

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Physician shortage limits access to abortion on Island: doctor

Times Colonist, June 8, 2022

Dr. Ruth Habte, a UBC resident doctor in obstetrics and gynecology and a member of AccessBC, which advocates for free prescription contraception, pointed out that a lack of anonymity can also be a barrier in small communities. “The more rural locations you go to, everyone kind of knows each other. If you’re really good friends with the pharmacist … and you don’t want them to know about this thing you’re going through, then that becomes really difficult in terms of privacy,” she said. “It’s also possible that the pharmacy will choose not to carry Mifegymiso.”

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Abortion rights supporters in Vancouver rally in solidarity over post-Roe American future

CityNews, Vancouver
May 14, 2
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The spotlight on the access to safe abortion in the U.S. has motivated abortion rights supporters in Vancouver to march and rally to express their outrage.

“I’m here in solidarity with all of the women and people with uteruses who are being denied their basic right and need to access abortion care,” one demonstrator tells CityNews.

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Advocates press B.C. Liberal leader to clarify stance on free contraception, access to safe abortion

CityNews, Vancouver
May 12, 2
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A grassroots group in B.C. seeking free contraception for all British Columbians is pressing provincial Liberal leader to clarify if he supports reproductive health choices and safe access.

Teale Phelps Bondaroff is the chair and co-founder of Access BC. He sent a letter to the newly elected B.C.’s opposition Liberal leader Kevin Falcon.

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'Not just a U.S. issue': Advocates urge feds to broaden safe abortion access in Canada

CityNews, Vancouver
May 12, 2
022

The recent spotlight on safe abortions in the U.S. has highlighted that many Canadians face a number of barriers when accessing their reproductive options, says one advocate. 

Unless you live in Vancouver, Toronto, or Montreal, “it’s very challenging to access abortion care,” said Makeda Zook, access line program manager at Action Canada for Sexual Health and Right.

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Advocates for free contraception disappointed election promise wasn't funded in 2022 B.C. budget

CBC, March 3, 2022

A B.C. advocacy group is calling on the provincial government to provide free prescription contraception to all British Columbians after it was promised during the 2020 election campaign but not included in the 2022 provincial budget. In a statement, Access B.C. says it was extremely disappointed in the lack of funding and wants the B.C. NDP to "fulfill its election promise to make all forms of prescription contraception universally accessible at no cost."

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Access to Free and Effective Contraception is a Basic Human Right

The Public Health Insight, September 26, 2021

Many of us know someone who has used contraception in their lifetime, whether for birth control or for the multitude of other benefits it provides. In Ontario for example, those under the age of 25 tend not to think about the cost thanks to provincial health insurance covering most of the available contraceptive options.

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B.C. NDP promises free prescription contraception if elected

The Globe and Mail,

October 14, 2021

“This is such an important step,” said Chen. “It has been such a barrier for people to be able to have their basic reproductive health and rights.”

The party said the program to provide, for example, oral contraceptive pills or intrauterine devices, will cost the government $60 million a year.

Chen said the move to make prescription contraception free is a continuation of the effort the government made to have free menstrual products in the bathrooms of all public schools.

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