Lesbians Suing NJ Over Law Requiring Heterosexual Sex Before Insurance Covers Medical Procedure (Video)

A great way to see how utterly ignorant parts of our nation have been (and continue to be) is to look at some older state and local laws – many of which are still, technically, in practice today. Such as a law in New Jersey concerning insurance companies and the legal requirements for covering fertility treatments for couples.

As reported by NJ.com:

State law requires large insurance providers to cover costly fertility treatments for patients medically unable to have children. The couples take issue with how the law defines infertility, which includes the inability to become pregnant after one or two years of unprotected sex, depending on a woman’s age.

Basically the law requires any female who wants her health insurance to cover fertility treatments to have sex with a male for one to two years before they will approve paying for the procedure.

Which poses a slight problem when you’re a lesbian. Because for a lesbian to abide by this law means that they would be required to have sex with a gender to which they aren’t sexually attracted. Well, at least if they wanted their health insurance to cover fertility treatments — which is a completely and totally ridiculous requirement.

Well, two lesbian couples are challenging the New Jersey law as unconstitutional for essentially preventing same-sex couples from receiving fertility treatments based on sexual orientation. While the law doesn’t specifically ban health insurance companies from providing fertility treatments to lesbian women, being that lesbians aren’t attracted to men, it sets a “rule” that’s clearly discriminatory toward the LGBT community.

To its credit, Horton Blue Cross Blue Shield released a statement that seemed to be trying to one-up the idiocy of the 2001 New Jersey law:

Horizon covers infertility services equally regardless of sexual orientation. We interpret the 2001 New Jersey law defining infertility in a gender and orientation neutral manner and our coverage standard complies with federal non-discrimination requirements.

Members unable to conceive due to medical or biological reasons are covered for the specific infertility benefits included in their policy. Horizon is committed to equality, values our LGBTQ members, and is sensitive to their unique healthcare challenges and needs. We regularly review our standards and procedures to ensure parity and fairness for all of our members.

So, the health insurance company is claiming that it is “committed to equality” and “values” its LGBT members — yet doesn’t seem to think that requiring lesbians to have sex with men for one to two years prior to approving fertility treatments is pathetically wrong and a gross violation of their rights.

At what point in any other situation — anywhere — would requiring anyone to have sex with someone they’re not sexually attracted to and/or don’t want to have sex with be an acceptable requirement for approving a medical procedure?

What I would like to see is Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield answer is this: If they’re not discriminating against same-sex couples, and they care about equality, then how, exactly, would a lesbian couple be approved for fertility treatments since they don’t have sex with males?

I get that their argument is that they’re simply “interpreting the law,” but by ignoring the reality that lesbians don’t have sex with men, you choose to ignore the fact that this law is highly discriminatory. Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield has the ability to do the right thing here, but they’re simply choosing not to, using this antiquated law as their excuse to discriminate.

This entire situation is simply asinine.

In a normal world where reality mattered, New Jersey lawmakers would quickly move to repeal this outdated law which would pave the way for same-sex couples to be treated equally, or Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield would do the right thing by using common sense in these matters. Instead, we’re looking at a state where Governor Chris Christie certainly won’t allow this law to be repealed and the insurance company is hiding behind this law because they simply don’t want to pay for something they don’t have to — even if that means outright discriminating against homosexuals.

This is a great reminder that, even though it’s 2016, we still have a long way to go in the fight for true equality for the LGBT community.

Watch the segment below via ABC 7:

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.


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