National Partnership for Women & Families

Country is Better Off with Health Insurance Marketplaces Open

Statement of Judith L. Lichtman, Senior Advisor, National Partnership for Women & Families
WASHINGTON, D.C. — October 1, 2013 —

"Today is a new day for millions of families across this country. Despite the best efforts of extremists in Congress, which have culminated in an unconscionable shutdown of the federal government, the health insurance marketplaces are open and critical consumer protections are in effect — at long last.

Those of us who have been denied access to quality, affordable coverage now have the opportunity to choose health plans that meet our needs and budgets. At long last, women are not charged more than men for the same policies, people with pre-existing conditions cannot be denied coverage, and the days when our insurance policies failed us when we needed them most are about to end.

While the government shutdown did not keep the health insurance marketplace from opening, the harm it is causing has serious consequences for women and families, communities and our economy. While members of Congress worry about how a shutdown affects them politically, families are worrying about how to make ends meet, pay the bills, and simply survive. It is past time for extremists in Congress to end the attacks on health care and instead reach a budget agreement that will end the shutdown. Congress must protect the millions of families it has recklessly placed in harm’s way."

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The National Partnership for Women & Families is a nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy group dedicated to promoting fairness in the workplace, access to quality health care and policies that help women and men meet the dual demands of work and family. More information is available at

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