Contact: Carrie Mumah, [email protected], 212-274-7294
NEW YORK—New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio sent an open letter signed by more than 80 mayors to the Trump-Pence Administration opposing the dangerous domestic gag rule. Mayor de Blasio and Mayor William A. Dennon of the City of Upland Borough, PA, are the two lead signatories.
Laura McQuade, President and CEO, Planned Parenthood of New York City:
“Planned Parenthood of New York City applauds Mayor de Blasio for his bold leadership and for doing what is right for New Yorkers—standing up for the access to quality, affordable health care that millions rely on. In NYC, 150,000 people rely on Title X for access to sexual and reproductive health care. Mayor De Blasio and the other 80 mayors who sent this letter are listening to the needs of their communities.
“The domestic gag rule is unethical and dangerous. We need physicians—NOT politicians—making health care recommendations for their patients. PPNYC will continue to fight for everyone’s right to access high-quality sexual and reproductive health care, regardless of their ability to pay.”
Trump’s gag rule, released in late May, makes it illegal for health care providers in the Title X program to tell patients how they can access abortion. It would also introduce restrictions designed to make it impossible for patients to access care at Planned Parenthood health centers.
In the bipartisan letter to Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar, the mayors highlighted the irreplaceable need for Planned Parenthood’s services in their communities:
“No one knows better than mayors how devastating it would be to take away access to health care and information from the people that we are honored to represent. If all Title X patients are blocked from receiving the full scope of medical information, it would be an attack on the well-being and economic security of those who already face barriers to accessing health care and need it most. People go to Planned Parenthood and other Title X centers because they know they will find health care professionals who are compassionate experts dedicated to reproductive and preventive health care. We know our communities, and we know they rely on the trusted care provided through the Title X program. It would be nothing short of disastrous for the millions of people who receive care through the Title X program to lose access to the providers that they trust and to the expert information that directly affects their bodies and lives.”
Title X is a decades-old popular and effective program designed to ensure that everyone has access to sexual and reproductive health care.
Although Planned Parenthood of New York City receives 20 percent of the funding from Public Health Solutions (PHS)—the grantee that distributes Title X funding to NYC providers—PPNYC serves 57 percent of the patients who get care through PHS grants.
In 2015, 91 percent of people served under Title X throughout New York State were women, and 60 percent had incomes at or below the federal poverty line. More than half of the people who rely on the Title X program nationwide are people of color: 21 percent of all Title X clients identify as Black or African American, and 32 percent identify as Hispanic or Latino.
The domestic gag rule has been met with widespread opposition by the American people, the medical community, lawmakers, and public health experts. New polling from Hart Research Associates showed overwhelming opposition to the Trump-Pence administration’s attacks on sexual and reproductive health care access. Major medical associations, including the American Medical Association, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the American College of Physicians, and others, oppose this rule.
Full text of the letter from Mayor de Blasio and the 80 other mayors can be found here.
Since 1916, Planned Parenthood of New York City (PPNYC) has been an advocate for and provider of sexual and reproductive health services and education for New Yorkers. Providing more than 100,000 patient visits annually, PPNYC’s health care centers in Manhattan, Brooklyn, the Bronx, Queens and Staten Island offer sexual and reproductive health services, including gynecological care, birth control, cancer screening, pregnancy testing, abortion, testing and treatment for sexually transmitted infections, HIV prevention, testing and counseling, transgender hormone therapy and vasectomy. Through a threefold mission of clinical services, education, and advocacy, PPNYC brings better health and more fulfilling lives to each new generation of New Yorkers. As a voice for reproductive freedom, PPNYC supports legislation and policies to ensure that all New Yorkers will have access to the full range of reproductive health care services and information.