Of all Peace Corps volunteers, 62 percent are women. Many work in countries where quality health care is not readily available. Unfortunately, hundreds of cases of rape and sexual assault have been perpetrated against volunteers over the last decade.
For many years, Congress has barred the Peace Corps from providing abortion coverage to its volunteers without exception. A similar ban for military servicewomen existed until 2012, when President Obama signed a bill broadened their coverage to include abortion in cases of rape or incest. The Peace Corps Equity Act would expand upon that policy, allowing Peace Corps volunteers the access to healthcare most women under federal government health plans already have.
We applaud the efforts of Sen. Lautenberg in speaking out for Peace Corps volunteers as civil servants.
- by Shieva, Web Correspondent, Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota Action Fund