The Positive Effects Of Birth Control

1689 Words 7 Pages
“There is, perhaps, one invention that historians a thousand years in the future will look back on and say, ‘That defined the 20th century’…That invention is the contraceptive pill” (Sonfield, Hasstedt, Gold 2015). Widely used by more than 60% of US women and accepted by most of the world’s religions, birth control, and access to it, is still a hot-button topic. Extensive research has been conducted studying the effects of birth control across many fields, and the results all seem to agree. Recent research seems to have shown that access to affordable birth control is directly tied to positive effects for the individual, the child, and the economy as a whole.
Access to affordable birth control has many benefits for the individual in question.
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Adam Sonfield et al. found that the advent of the birth control pill ushered in a dramatic increase in the amount of women in the workforce and that a large portion of those female workers went into skilled and professional positions. He goes on to confirm that effective use of birth control allows the woman to schedule her pregnancy to coincide in a conducive manner with her education and/or early career goals (Sonfield et al., 2013). Access to affordable birth control allows the individual to focus on her workplace participation without having to take any extended absences for maternity leave and subsequent health issues thereafter. A required extended leave often causes women to miss vital experiences that would be beneficial or even necessary in order to be considered for a raise or promotion. Extrapolating on this concept, affordable, accessible birth control also has positive benefits on all women’s equality in the workplace. Birth control is not just deciding when or whether to have a child; birth control empowers womankind in a way that men have never had to overcome. In an article for Forbes Magazine, Gloria Feldt, former CEO of Planned Parenthood, has said, “If women are going to have control and power in society, they have to be able to control when they have children…” (Seligson 2010). Birth control represents control over one’s own body. Being seen as an equal would be difficult in the workplace if a woman could not control what is going on in her own body, particularly in regards to an issue that would require months of absence and convalescence. Hannah Seligson says in Forbes magazine, “Ultimately, the birth control pill gave women time and control, critical commodities in the workplace” (2010). The ACLU agrees, stating, “Access to contraception is critical to an individual’s autonomy, equality and ability to participate in the social, economic, and political

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