West Chester votes down insurance policy that pays for abortions

The West Chester Twp. trustees rejected a health insurance policy renewal Tuesday night because it covers abortions.

Trustees Ann Becker and Mark Welch voted against renewing Aetna’s policy with the township because abortions are a covered benefit. Becker said she learned about the benefit a couple months ago and asked if they could take it out, because she doesn’t think taxpayer money should pay for abortions.

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“We did stop the Aetna renewal,” she said. “It’s not because of the health care; it’s just the moral aspect of using taxpayer money to pay for abortions.”

Welch said he doesn’t know when the clause about abortions got into the contract, but he too opposes the idea, especially because the policy doesn’t put any conditions on the benefit.

“I think it was something that was just below the radar…,” Welch said. “It’s one of those things that could be divisive, but I think abortion really should be reserved for those three instances — rape, incest and the mom’s health.”

Trustee Board President Lee Wong said they will be studying the matter to see if removing abortions from the coverage plan would violate collective bargaining unit agreements. But he too believes there should be conditions, like Welch mentioned, if the township must keep the coverage. He voted yes to renew the policy.

We are working to bring you more information, and this story will be updated as we learn new details.

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