On Wednesday, Nebraska lawmakers voted to override the governor’s veto when they restored funding for maternity care for undocumented women—based on the premise that while a pregnant woman herself is ineligible for benefits, the fetus she carries can be enrolled in public health insurance.
“This is a good policy with a bad justification. We support programs that extend care to all pregnant women, including undocumented women,” said Jessica González-Rojas, executive director of the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health (NLIRH). “However, the rationale for such programs ought to be to promote healthy women, healthy pregnancies, and healthy children. To unnaturally separate the health of a fetus from the health of the woman who carries it is dehumanizing and out of touch with the reality of women’s lives.”