Minister Bruins for Medical Care has today received a summons with the requirement to make contraception available to everyone free of charge.
In addition to initiators Bureau Clara Wichmann, which is committed to women’s rights, and civilian movement DeGoedeZaak, 7,000 co-plaintiffs have joined the lawsuit that is being brought against the State.
“Requesting attention is good”
Bruins says in a response that contraception is sufficiently accessible in the Netherlands: “We have many types of contraception, which are also widely available, and also for a relatively small amount.”
But people can also think differently about that, says the minister. “The issuing of a summons is a sign of asking attention for a topic and that seems very good to me.”
Bureau Clara Wichmann has been fighting for free contraception for some time. For example, the movement started a petition last year to get the pill back in the basic package, after it was canceled in 2011 by then health minister Klink.
Girls under the age of 18 still receive the pill from the basic insurance since then. This is also the case between the ages of 18 and 21, but the costs fall under the deductible. From the age of 21, women must pay for themselves or take out additional insurance.
50 euros per year
On average, the pill costs women around 50 euros a year. Bureau Clara Wichmann finds that unfair, because the costs of birth control almost always end up on women. In addition, not every woman can cough up that amount. According to the movement, that goes against the UN Women’s Convention, among other things.
The agency’s petition was signed nearly 50,000 times last year, but there was no parliamentary majority for a proposal from PvdA member Lilianne Ploumen to put the pill back in the basic package. The summons was then drawn up.