New York, NY — This June for LGBT Pride Month, Planned Parenthood is proud to reaffirm its commitment to the rights and health of LGBTQ people. At Planned Parenthood, we realize that our incredible patients and supporters don't comprise any one identity, and we understand how important it is for all people to have access to high-quality health care that affirms their identity, their family, and their sexuality. We believe that all people deserve quality, affordable health care and compassionate, nonjudgmental sexual health information, no matter who they are or where they live.
“This June, and every day of the year, Planned Parenthood stands with lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people. We see you. We care about you. We stand with you — no matter where you live, no matter what,”said Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. “At Planned Parenthood, we believe that reproductive rights are deeply connected to civil rights for all Americans, and we have long stood with LGBTQ people in the struggle for full equality — many of whom turn to Planned Parenthood for health care, information, and education.”
During the month of June, Planned Parenthood staff and volunteers across the country will participate in Pride Month celebrations, marches, and events. Every day, Planned Parenthood health center doors are open to everyone — regardless of gender identity, gender expression, and/or sexual orientation.
“Planned Parenthood strives to provide health care that’s inclusive and respectful of all genders,” said Richards. “We know that every family is unique and every family deserves to be recognized, supported, and valued. Our goal is to make every person who comes through our doors feel welcome, comfortable, and cared for while providing the best possible care.”
The progress we’ve seen on LGBTQ rights in recent years is rooted in principles that also underlie reproductive rights: that politicians should not get to decide what you do with your body or what your family looks like, and that rights should not depend on the state you live in.
Planned Parenthood recognizes that the infringement on basic rights of any population is inextricably linked to the human rights of all populations. We stand with LGBTQ people because it is increasingly clear that those attacking the rights of LGBTQ people are the same politicians pushing to eliminate people’s access to reproductive and sexual health care, including safe, legal abortion — and that their motivations are closely linked.
All people, including transgender and gender nonconforming people, deserve to be treated with dignity and respect for their privacy and autonomy. Yet we're seeing hostile lawmakers drive an aggressive political agenda of imposing their beliefs on the private lives of others, using outdated and harmful gender stereotypes. Whether it’s interfering with a woman’s personal decision to get an abortion, denying access to birth control, or policing which bathroom someone can use, these laws only lead to increased stigma, harassment, and discrimination.
“Although continuing to face oppression, LGBTQ communities are resilient, strong, and loving,” said Richards. “Planned Parenthood is proud to stand with them, and is committed to making our country a place where no one experiences discrimination or violence because of their gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation.”
Members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer communities have unique health care needs. They experience greater obstacles to obtaining and benefiting from sexual and reproductive health services than non-LGBTQ people. In addition to high rates of stress due to systematic harassment and discrimination — which has been shown to affect physical and mental health — LGBTQ people face low rates of health insurance coverage, high rates of HIV/AIDS and cancer, and high rates of discrimination from medical providers. And LGBTQ people of color face even higher risks.
Last month, the Obama administration released regulations to implement the civil rights section of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin, age, and disability in federally-supported health programs. This landmark rule moves this country’s health care system even closer to health equity for all, and has profound implications for health coverage and health care access for LGBTQ patients.
The rule lays out new, groundbreaking protections that prohibit discrimination on the basis of sex, including critical prohibitions on discrimination against transgender people on the basis of gender identity and discrimination based on sexual orientation in many circumstances. Planned Parenthood worked closely with civil rights partners to urge the administration to adopt these and other protections to ensure the strongest possible safeguards against discrimination. These protections will advance health equity for all communities nationwide by improving access for people who have the greatest need for care, including transgender people and communities of color.
Richards added, “This Pride Month, Planned Parenthood is proud to reaffirm our commitment to the rights and health of LGBTQ people. We want LGBTQ people to know that no matter where we are — online, in health centers, in the community — all are welcome.”
Planned Parenthood is the nation’s leading sexual and reproductive health care provider and advocate, serving 2.5 million patients annually through its health care service providers, and 1.5 million more through educational programs and outreach.
You can visit Planned Parenthood health centers and online to get more information about any aspect of your sexual health. Planned Parenthood websites receive 60 million visits each year, and we use social media sites like Tumblr, Facebook, and Twitter, as well as innovative chat/text programs, to get accurate, sensitive information to youth, parents, and men and women every day.
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 over 650 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.
Planned Parenthood Federation of America media office: 212-261-4433
June 02, 2016