CONCORD- Two and a half years after 3 Republican Executive Councilors led a political crusade against Planned Parenthood of Northern New England, state funding to the organization was been restored in a unanimous (4-0) vote this morning. All of the Councilors involved in that defund effort no longer hold Executive Council seats.
The latest contract awards $737, 588 in General Funds to Planned Parenthood of Northern New England, retroactive to July 1, 2013, to provide low and no cost health services to nearly 14,000 individuals through its health centers located in Claremont, Derry, Exeter, Keene, Manchester and West Lebanon. These funds provide a state match for a federal Title X award that Planned Parenthood has received separately from the US Department of Health and Human Services, starting in 2011.
“Today we’ve come full circle, after a challenging 2 ½ year journey that began in June of 2011 when 3 ideologically-driven Councilors denied health care funding for women and families in nearly half of the regions of the state,” stated Jennifer Frizzell, Senior Policy Advisor with PPNNE. “Our thanks to Governor Hassan and new leadership on the Executive Council whose actions support access to cost-effective, essential preventive services such as cancer screenings, breast exams, access to birth control, and sexual health education, information and health counseling, “ Frizzell continued.
The timing of the vote coincides with the special election cycle where candidates are vying to fill the vacant seat in Executive Council District One. “During today’s vote I couldn’t help but feel the significance of the empty seat at the Council table. The late Ray Burton (R – Bath) was a long-time supporter of Planned Parenthood and the health services provided to his constituents in the Upper Valley. Burton viewed the actions of his colleagues in June 2011 as a real blemish on the Council’s record of acting in the best of interests of the communities across the state and awarding contracts based on fair standards of performance,” concluded Frizzell.
Jennifer Frizzell, Senior Policy Advisor (603) 340 - 1593
January 29, 2014