Chris Coons has spent his senate career fighting on behalf of women and the issues that matter most to us. He has worked to protect our health and reproductive rights, led the fight to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act, and fights to close the gender pay gap by supporting equal pay and equal rights.
Chris Protects Our Health and Reproductive Rights
Chris knows that Planned Parenthood plays a crucial role in providing essential health services, like cancer screenings and preventative health checks, to the women that need them most. That’s why Chris has fought relentlessly against GOP efforts to cut funding to the organization. But, his advocacy for reproductive rights extends well beyond his support for Planned Parenthood. In the Senate, Chris has spoken out against dangerous pieces of legislation that would have limited access to birth control, shamed women, and criminalized doctors.
Additionally, Chris has championed two pieces of bold legislation to protect maternal health: the Reach Every Mother and Child Act and the Save Women’s Preventative Care Act. Reach Every Mother aims to reduce the nearly 300,000 preventable deaths around the world from pregnancy-related causes each year, many of which disproportionately impact women of color. Save Women’s Preventative Care would require all health plans to cover essential maternal health services.
Chris has stood up to right-wing politicians and their anti-choice agenda countless times:
- Opposing a resolution that would have allowed states to block grant funding to family planning services that also provided abortions.
- Chris cast a key vote against an appropriations amendment that would have “deleted $400 million in Planned Parenthood funding.”
- Chris opposed a Trump administration rule change that prohibited Title X recipients from referring or performing abortions. The change would have made it impossible for Planned Parenthood of Delaware to continue to accept federal aid.
- On three occasions, Chris opposed GOP efforts to pass the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, a bill that would “negate the Roe v. Wade standard” and criminalize abortions after 20 weeks.
- Chris voted against Republican legislation that would block insurance plans on the Affordable Care Act, which provided abortions, from receiving federal subsidies.
- And, he opposed the Born Alive Survivors of Abortion Act, a bill that would require doctors to treat living fetuses after failed abortions as they would treat any other child. The unnecessary bill, which was “aimed at shaming women and criminalizing doctors,” was a GOP effort to paint Democrats as extreme on abortion.
Chris Advocates For Domestic Violence Survivors
Chris was a key supporter of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), a vital piece of legislation that helped to protect women from domestic and gender-based violence. The Violence Against Women Act addressed key gaps in the existing law to facilitate the collaboration between victim service providers, law enforcement providers, and other experts in the field.
In 2013, Chris helped pass the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act. This updated bill took key steps to reduce gun-related domestic violence by lowering the threshold for barring gun purchases to include misdemeanor convictions of domestic abuse and stalking charges and closing the “boyfriend loophole.” The legislation also expanded key protections to indigenous and transgender people.
Since the 2013 reauthorization act expired in 2019, Chris has called for a new reauthorization bill.
Chris Supports Equal Pay And Equal Rights
Chris has always been a strong proponent for the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) and the Paycheck Fairness Act.
The Equal Rights Amendment would help secure essential rights for women, by expanding the legal recourse available to victims of gender-based violence, setting up realistic challenges to gender-based pay discrimination, and ensuring that employers make reasonable accommodations to allow pregnant women to continue working. Chris has also backed the Paycheck Fairness Act, which the National Partnership for Women and Families described as a “reasonable and comprehensive bill that would combat the wage discrimination that has plagued the nation for decades.”
Chris has repeatedly taken the time to stand in solidarity with women for their rights, whether attending women’s marches in Washington and Delaware, meeting and working with leading women around the state and country, or most importantly, legislating on women’s behalf.