FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(Poughkeepsie, NY) Planned Parenthood Mid-Hudson Valley denounces Representatives Chris Gibson (R-Saratoga Springs) and Nan Hayworth (R- Mount Kisco) for their votes to eliminate the Title X family planning grant program as part of the 2011 continuing budget resolution as well as the Pence Amendment, which passed in a vote of 240-185, and blocks all federal funding for Planned Parenthood including Medicaid.
The Title X program was signed into law in 1970 under President Nixon with the belief that affordable birth control could lift people out of poverty by helping them plan their families. Hayworth and Gibson were two of six members of the New York delegation to vote for the amendment proposed by Indiana Republican Representative Mike Pence to deny funding to Planned Parenthood and the patients they serve.
Title X funding can only be used for family planning services including birth control, life saving cervical and breast cancer screenings, HIV counseling and testing, testing and treatment for sexually transmitted diseases, and education. The funding cannot and is not used to provide abortion services. Under the proposal, 48 percent of Planned Parenthood patients nationwide would be cut off from their source of health care for these essential services. Ninety-seven percent of the services provided by Planned Parenthood are preventive, most of which are women’s gynecology services.
“It is not fiscally responsible to cut funding to a program that promotes women’s health and reduces unplanned pregnancies, many of which result in abortions,” stated Ruth-Ellen Blodgett, President and Chief Executive Officer of Planned Parenthood of the Mid-Hudson Valley. “In fact, for every dollar spent on family planning, taxpayers save nearly $4 in costs associated with unplanned pregnancies,” Blodgett said.
Locally, Planned Parenthood Mid-Hudson Valley’s six health centers provide care to approximately 18,000 patients each year. Eliminating Title X and Medicaid funding to Planned Parenthood means thousands of Planned Parenthood Mid-Hudson Valley residents will lose access to their primary source of family planning and reproductive health care services.
“We are asking our Senators to reject this attack against women’s health and Planned Parenthood. We need to guarantee the millions of Americans who count on Planned Parenthood for health care that they will be protected,” added Blodgett.
Planned Parenthood Mid-Hudson Valley is a non-profit organization that provides comprehensive reproductive and complementary health care services in settings which preserve and protect the essential privacy and rights of each individual; advocates public policies which guarantee these rights and ensures access to such services and provides educational programs which enhance understanding of individual and societal implications of human sexuality.
Public Affairs Manager
Planned Parenthood Mid-Hudson Valley
845.838.1200, ext. 114
February 25, 2011