Britney Spears inspires new federal bill on forced contraception

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ST. LOUIS–On the same day that singer Britney Spears has another hearing in the ongoing battle over her conservatorship, a Missouri congressman has introduced a bill inspired by her saga.

Spears has had much of her life controlled by a conservatorship after enduring mental health struggles in 2007 and 2008.

At a June 23 hearing, her first public words in court on the matter, Spears said she was being forced to take medication and use an intrauterine device for birth control, said she was not allowed to marry her boyfriend, and said she wanted to own her own money.

Wednesday’s hearing will deal with the fallout from those comments including the resignation of her court-appointed attorney.

“By sharing her story, Britney Spears has exposed an injustice that should not have happened. No woman should be forced to have an IUD without her consent,” U.S. Rep. Jason Smith, a Republican from Salem, Missouri said in announcing the introduction of the Conservatorships Immoral Relationship with Contraception in the United States (CIRCUS) Act. Smith called the bill a “targeted solution to help ensure individuals like Ms. Spears are empowered in the decision to be placed or kept on birth control.”

The act would bar healthcare providers from federal programs if they “deny the removal of contraceptive devices without the approval of an individual’s conservator or prescribe birth control to the individual without her consent.”

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