Dangerous Funding Bill Would Cut Women off from Planned Parenthood, End the Nation’s Family Planning Program

WASHINGTON - Planned Parenthood Federation of America calls on the House Appropriations Committee to reject the proposed FY18 Labor-Health and Human Services appropriations bill, which would be devastating for women and their access to health care.

Statement of Dana Singiser, Vice President of Public Policy and Government Affairs, Planned Parenthood Federation of America:

The funding bill being considered by the House Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations Subcommittee today is shocking, and shows a clear disregard for women’s health and lives. This is more extreme than even the Trump administration’s own budget: It would prevent millions of people from coming to Planned Parenthood for basic health care, and completely eliminate Title X — the nation’s only federal program for birth control that 4 million women rely on each year.

“We didn’t believe it was possible for congressional attacks on women’s health and lives to get any worse, but the drafters of this bill have sunk to a new low. We’ve made incredible progress for women over the past decade: Fifty-five million women now have access to no-copay birth control, and the rates of unintended pregnancy and teen pregnancy are at historic lows. We should build on, not undo, the progress we have made as a country. The American people will not stand for it, and neither should Congress. The House Appropriations Committee must reject this bill.

Among other dangerous provisions for women, the Fiscal Year 2018 Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies Appropriations Bill would:

  • Single out and attack women who access Planned Parenthood for basic, preventive health care. This bill would prevent Planned Parenthood from participating in ANY program funded through Congress’s annual Labor-HHS bill. This includes not just Medicaid, but the Title X program, Zika prevention programs, HIV prevention grants, Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) grants to prevent sexual assault, successful sex education programs, the CDC National Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening program, maternal and child health programs, STD and infertility prevention grants, and more.

  • End the Title X family planning program. Title X is the only federal program solely dedicated to birth control. Ending the program goes even further than the president’s budget, and would be a devastating blow for the four million young people, uninsured, and women with low incomes who rely on Title X for basic reproductive health care.

  • Eliminate the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program and funds abstinence-only education programs. Despite the progress we’ve made in helping teens stay safe and healthy -- rates of unintended pregnancy among teens in the U.S. have reached a historic low and more young people are delaying sexual activity and using birth control when they do have sex -- the budget would eliminate the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program. It also includes abstinence-only programs, an increase of $5 million, which puts young people's health at risk, and are not based in evidence or offer accurate medical information.

  • Allow employers, insurance companies, and hospitals to discriminate against women seeking reproductive health care. Opposed by major medical associations like the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), it would place harmful limitations on access to abortion, even if medically necessary to save a woman’s life or health, and put a woman’s health at serious risk in emergency situations.

  • Continue harmful policy riders to restrict abortion access, including the harmful Hyde amendment that discriminates against poor women and women of color by prohibiting Medicaid from covering abortion.

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Planned Parenthood is the nation’s leading provider and advocate of high-quality, affordable health care for women, men, and young people, as well as the nation’s largest provider of sex education. With more than 600 health centers across the country, Planned Parenthood organizations serve all patients with care and compassion, with respect and without judgment. Through health centers, programs in schools and communities, and online resources, Planned Parenthood is a trusted source of reliable health information that allows people to make informed health decisions. We do all this because we care passionately about helping people lead healthier lives.