QUEEN'S PARK – MPP Jennie Stevens (St. Catharines) tabled a motion to expand OHIP to cover prescription contraception and remove cost barriers limiting people's ability to choose their reproductive health and family planning.
"I am very proud to table this motion today to ensure that everyone has the ability to make choices about their health and family planning," said Stevens. "Today's motion reflects an important step to ensure contraception is available under OHIP in Ontario. With living costs rising every day, every solution to help make life more affordable is a step we need to take."
British Columbia is set to be the first province in Canada to fund prescription contraceptives, effective on April 1, 2023. This change is set to save the province millions - BC is estimating a 95 million cost saving annually.
"Making prescription birth control free is a vital part of lowering the barriers to access for people across the province," said MPP Jill Andrew (Toronto-St. Paul's), NDP critic for Women's Social and Economic Opportunity. "This province should empower ciswomen, transgender, and non-binary people to exercise choice over their reproductive health, and that starts with ensuring that choice is accessible to all."
In 2022, the Ontario NDP proposed a plan to have OHIP cover contraception. That plan would have included emergency birth control such as Plan B, the pill, intrauterine devices, implants, shots, patches, and rings.
"Ontario must step forward and pursue this important motion," said Hava Starkman, Co-Chair of Cover ContraceptiON. "Cost is the greatest barrier to access to contraceptives. It's time for Ontario to adopt a universal no-cost contraception prescription policy."
"The Ontario NDP is determined to make birth control available under OHIP," said Stevens. "With Ford continuing to privatize health care and forcing our public health care system into crisis, we know how important this would be for people across the province."