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Oregon: Did You Know?

Did you know Oregon helps sexual assault victims obtain emergency contraception?

In September 2003, Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski signed a bill establishing the Sexual Assault Victims' Emergency Medical Response Fund, which directs the Department of Justice, funds permitting, to pay for a complete medical assessment for sexual assault victims, including the provision of emergency contraception.

According to Claudia Weber, a sexual assault survivor active in the Oregon attorney general's sexual assault task force, "It takes the onus off of (rape) survivors to have to make decisions regarding anything else but their best medical welfare. . . .  They don't have to worry about money, and money is always an issue as well as anonymity."

Additionally, in 2007, Governor Kulongoski signed into law a provision requiring victims of sexual assault to be given information about and access to emergency contraception in the emergency room.

The governor declared that the improved access "is fundamentally about women being able to make the best health care decisions for themselves and their families."

S.B. 752, 72nd Leg. Assem., Reg. Sess. (Or. 2003) (codified at Or. Rev. Stat. § 147.397); Erin Hoover Barnett, Legislators Back Aid for Rape Victims, Oregonian, July 19, 2003, at A1; H.B. 2700, 74th Leg. Assem., Reg. Sess. (Or. 2007) (codified at Or. Rev. Stat. § 435.254); Brad Cain, Oregon Contraception Bill Signed into Law, Assoc. Press, May 30, 2007.


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