The U.S. Supreme Court decision in Hobby Lobby this June was a Pandora’s box, creating a gaping legal loophole for employers to discriminate against women employees by denying them full reproductive healthcare. With a legislative fix stalled in the Senate and House, NOW has created a petition asking President Obama to issue an executive order ensuring that all federal contractors who provide a group insurance plan comply with the contraceptive mandate in the Affordable Care Act.
Twenty-eight million people in the U.S. are employed by federal contractors, so an executive order would benefit millions of women and their dependents. President Obama has acted in the past to promote the rights of women working for federal contractors, and he can do it again.
After a Senate bill to raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25/hour to $10.10/hour was blocked by Republicans, President Obama issued an executive order to raise the minimum wage for federal contractors to $10.10/hour. In June, President Obama issued an executive order prohibiting federal contractors from discriminating against LGBTQIA individuals. Earlier this year in April, the president also issued two executive orders pertaining to federal contractors that promoted equal pay for women.
Time and again, the president has used his executive power to fight against discrimination and ensure that workers are treated fairly. Now, we want the president to make crystal clear that the U.S. government will not do business with those who discriminate against women.