NARAL Pro-Choice Nevada Applauds Gov. Sisolak for Signing SB 364 into Law to Provide Emergency Contraception Access to Survivors of Sexual Assault
NARAL celebrates new law requiring emergency contraception be made available to sexual assault survivors
Nevada — On Sunday, Governor Steve Sisolak signed into law SB 364, which will ensure that survivors of sexual assault can access time-sensitive emergency contraception (EC) in Nevada emergency rooms. The bill, introduced by state Sen. Melanie Scheible (D-Las Vegas), passed in the state Senate in April and the Assembly last month.
NARAL Pro-Choice Nevada Director Caroline Mello Roberson released the following statement in response to the signing of SB 364 into law:
“NARAL Pro-Choice Nevada thanks Governor Steve Sisolak for taking swift action to sign this critical bill into law, ensuring that survivors of sexual assault are able to access time-sensitive emergency contraception in every Nevada emergency room. State Sen. Scheible and the members of the state legislature who worked tirelessly to get this urgent bill to Gov. Sisolak understand that unconscionable barriers to care have no place in the Silver State. In Nevada, we trust people to make their own personal healthcare decisions, and today’s win for reproductive freedom will help ensure every body can access the care they need when they need it.”
Serena Evans, Nevada Coalition to End Domestic and Sexual Violence (NCEDSV) policy coordinator, released the following statement:
“NCEDSV is proud of the passage and signing of SB 364. It is important that victim-survivors are able to access emergency contraception in a timely manner from any hospital and emergency room when requested. Victim-survivors should not have to travel to and from a SANE location or undergo a SANE exam to access this truly important care. SB 364 reduces barriers for victim-survivors of sexual assault.”
An estimated 25,000 women in the United States become pregnant as a result of sexual assault each year, and statistics suggest that 22,000 of those pregnancies could be prevented if every sexual assault victim-survivor had timely access to EC. There are multiple types of FDA-approved emergency contraceptives, including the copper intrauterine device (IUD) and two types of pills that are commonly referred to as the ”morning after pill.” Depending on the form of EC, it can be effective if taken within 3-5 days of unprotected sex.
SB 364 is a continuation of the successful 2019 effort, led by former Assemblywoman Connie Munk (D-Las Vegas), to require Nevada hospitals to provide survivors with information on where to access EC. EC is a safe and effective way to prevent a pregnancy—it does not end a pregnancy.
Emergency rooms often serve as an entry point into the healthcare system for people who have been sexually assaulted. It is essential that emergency rooms provide access to time-sensitive emergency contraception for survivors of sexual assault. Survivors should not be forced to seek this care from other providers, and there are some who may not be able to see a primary care doctor for the care they need.
For over 50 years, NARAL Pro-Choice America and its network of state affiliates and chapters have fought to protect and advance reproductive freedom—including access to abortion, contraception, and paid family leave—for every body. NARAL is powered by its more than 2.5 million members from every state and congressional district in the country, representing the 7 in 10 Americans who believe every person should have the freedom to make the best decision for themselves about if, when, and how to raise a family.