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“Planned Parenthood will not sit idly by and watch teens be stripped of the information and skills that empower them to stay healthy and make informed decisions.”

Washington DC — Today, Planned Parenthood is in court fighting for the teens, parents, and families who benefit from the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program (TPPP). Last year, the Trump-Pence administration abruptly and arbitrarily ended TPPP grant agreements despite the value and proven effectiveness of these programs. In February, Planned Parenthood sued the Trump-Pence administration, arguing that terminating the grants is unlawful and goes against congressional mandate that the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) fund medically accurate and age-appropriate programs that are proven to reduce unintended pregnancy. Now, Planned Parenthood is in court fighting back against the Trump-Pence administration’s attack on the TPPP, which as many as 1.2 million young people across the country could benefit from. 

Last Friday, the Trump-Pence administration announced in two Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOAs) that it would radically remake the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program (TPPP) to push ineffective abstinence-only-until-marriage programming. With these announcements, the administration has dramatically shifted how it would administer the program. By requiring grantees to incorporate ineffective abstinence-only (which the Trump-Pence administration labels “sexual risk avoidance”) approaches into every program component, HHS is dictating a single and ineffective approach to teen pregnancy prevention. The announcement also completely erases any mention of LGBTQ youth.

Statement from Carrie Flaxman, Deputy Director of Public Policy Litigation and Law at Planned Parenthood Federation of America:

As the nation's leading provider of sex education, Planned Parenthood will not sit idly by and watch teens be stripped of the information and skills that empower them to stay healthy and make informed decisions. The Trump-Pence administration is unlawfully prioritizing its abstinence-only-until-marriage agenda over the health and well-being of American teens. Bottom line: The TPPP has proven to be effective, and taking away this crucial resource will harm teens and families across America.

Late last week, a judge on the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ruled, in one of four cases brought against HHS, that the Trump-Pence administration’s efforts to terminate the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program grants of the four plaintiffs in that case were unlawful. Planned Parenthood affiliates filed a separate case, which has a hearing on April 24 in Spokane, WA.

For the past seven years, the TPPP has made a real and measurable difference in the lives of young people through programs that teach young people about sexual health, help families communicate better, and connect young people with health services. Now, the Trump-Pence administration is trying to turn back that progress, ignoring science and the needs of young people, all in favor of its ideological agenda. If the administration succeeds, it would abruptly cut off at least one million young people who stand to benefit from high-quality, evidence-based programs that help them stay healthy and make decisions about their futures. Eighty-five percent of adults support maintaining federal funding for the TPPP. Planned Parenthood will continue to advocate for access to sex education and the families that benefit from the TPPP.

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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.