U.S. House of Representatives Votes to Prohibit All Federal Funding to Planned Parenthood; Women’s Access to Vital Health Services in Connecticut and Rhode Island in Jeopardy
WASHINGTON DC – Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed an amendment offered by Rep. Mike Pence (R-Indiana) to bar Planned Parenthood from receiving federal funds for any purpose, including providing basic primary and lifesaving preventive health care to women and families. Pence offered the amendment to the FY11 Continuing Resolution, which completely eliminates the national family planning program Title X.
Planned Parenthood of Southern New England President and CEO Judy Tabar states that, “Today, U.S. House of Representatives passed an extreme and dangerous piece of legislation targeting Planned Parenthood, one of America’s largest and most trusted health care providers.
“In Connecticut and Rhode Island, every year we serve 70,000 patients; the House bill will cut patients’ access to essential, lifesaving services such as breast and cervical cancer screenings, annual exams, family planning visits, birth control, HIV testing, and more. The thousands of young people we reach through our federally funded education programs will also be negatively impacted.
“Every day, our work prevents more unintended pregnancies than anyone else in the country. Planned Parenthood has a huge impact on the lives of women and families. To be targeted by this outrageous legislation is radically out of step with mainstream American values, and it is out of line with the issues voters want Congress to focus on, such as the economy and job creation.
“To be clear, the amendment to prohibit Planned Parenthood from receiving federal funding does nothing to reduce the deficit, and it does nothing to improve the economy. In fact, health professionals will actually lose their jobs as a result, and most egregiously, it takes health care away from American women who cannot afford to pay for it on their own.
“We are now counting on the U.S. Senate to roundly reject both the C.R. in its current state, as well as the Pence amendment.”
In response to the House’s passage of the Pence amendment today, Planned Parenthood Federation of America President Cecile Richards released the following statement. “For 95 years, Planned Parenthood has provided medical care and family planning services to women across the country. One in five American women has received care from a Planned Parenthood health center during her lifetime, and last year three million patients came to one of our more than 800 health centers. We are trusted by millions of women and families, and we deliver care to those who need it most.
“This policy of attempting to undermine Planned Parenthood, the organization in the United States that does more than any other to encourage the use of contraception for those wanting to avoid pregnancy, certainly guarantees an increase in the number of unintended pregnancies. It is difficult to understand why people who say they are opposed to abortion would do so much to undermine the family planning and contraception that helps prevent the need for it.
“Most importantly, those who want to put Planned Parenthood out of business have not explained how the three million Americans currently served by Planned Parenthood's more than 800 health centers will get the health care they need if this dangerous provision becomes law.
“It now falls to Senators from both parties to join together to reject this extreme approach, restore common sense, and guarantee that Planned Parenthood and the millions of Americans who count on us for health care are protected. Ensuring that millions of women can obtain health care from their trusted provider is what mainstream Americans want and expect from the United States Senate.”
February 18, 2011