Buying Plan B Will No Longer Require an ID or a Prescription

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/22069127@N03/2695489692/">VixyView</a>/Flickr

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The Obama administration did an about-face on emergency contraception Monday evening, announcing that it will allow women to obtain Plan B One-Step over the counter without age restrictions or ID requirements.

Last month, the Department of Justice had appealed an April 5 ruling by US District Court Judge Edward R. Korman, who said the Food and Drug Administration should make all forms of levonorgestrel-based emergency contraception, or EC, available over the counter to all women, regardless of age. Here’s the letter the DOJ sent Korman on Monday:

We write to advise the Court that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) have complied with the Court’s April 10, 2013, judgment in the above-referenced case by granting the 2001 Citizen Petition and making Plan B One-Step (PBOS) available over-the-counter (OTC) without age or point-of-sale restrictions as described below. It is the government’s understanding that this course of action fully complies with the Court’s judgment in this action. Once the Court confirms that the government’s understanding is correct, the government intends to file with the Circuit Court notice that it is voluntarily withdrawing its appeal in this matter.

The Center for Reproductive Rights, which had sued the administration to force universal availability of EC, welcomed the change, but noted that it still does not go far enough. “Now that the appeals court has forced the federal government’s hand, the FDA is finally taking a significant step forward,” said the group’s president, Nancy Northup. “But the Obama Administration continues to unjustifiably deny the same wide availability for generic, more affordable brands of emergency contraception.”

Northup added that CRR “will continue to fight for fair treatment for women who want and need more affordable options.”

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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