I am outraged that the anti-choice House leadership passed the Pence Amendment to defund Planned Parenthood and the Continuing Resolution to eliminate Title X, the nation’s 41 year old family planning program signed into law by President Nixon.
These extreme actions exclude all federal funding to Planned Parenthood. Since the Hyde Amendment already forbids federal funding for abortion procedures, the Pence Amendment is really an attack on birth control. Attempting to eliminate funding to the largest reproductive health organization is nothing more than an ideological attack that does nothing to help our economy or increase job growth, the very thing the new leadership promised to do when elected last fall.
For over four decades, Title X has provided essential primary and preventive health care to millions of American women, helping them reach their reproductive goals and increasing their likelihood to fulfill their educational goals and fully participate in the nation’s workforce.
According to the Guttmacher Institute, in 2008, contraceptive services provided at Title X–supported centers in New York helped women avoid 64,700 unintended pregnancies, which would have resulted in 27,000 abortions. It’s clear this essential family planning program reduces the need for abortion.
We now must ask our senators to reject this extreme approach, restore common sense, and guarantee that Planned Parenthood and the millions of Americans who count on their health care services are protected.
Call on Senators Schumer and Gillibrand to defeat any bill that targets Planned Parenthood or women’s health care.
The writer is a member of the Board of Planned Parenthood Hudson Peconic, Inc.
March 18, 2011