WASHINGTON – Cecile Richards, President of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, is speaking out on H.R. 1: The Continuing Resolution that “represents the most devastating assault on women’s health in American history”
“Under the guise of deficit reduction, the House Republican Leadership is pursuing the most politically driven assault on women’s health in American history.
“The just officially released FY 2011 Continuing Resolution completely eliminates the nation’s family planning program, Title X. This program has provided millions of American women with lifesaving health care since Richard Nixon signed it into law in 1970.
“In pursuit of his highly political and extreme agenda, Rep. Mike Pence, with the full support of Speaker John Boehner, will also offer an amendment to prohibit all Planned Parenthood health centers from receiving any federal funds for any purpose, including providing affordable cancer screenings, birth control, HIV testing and treatment for sexually transmitted infections.
“These are dangerous proposals, and the new leaders of the House are pushing them forward at great risk to women. They are doing so at their own political peril.
“Eliminating the Title X program and prohibiting all federal funding for Planned Parenthood, one of the largest women’s health providers in the country, will result in millions of women across the country losing access to basic primary and preventive health care, including lifesaving cancer screenings, family planning, contraception, STI testing and treatment, and annual exams. In fact, six in 10 women who receive care from a family planning health center consider it to be their main source of health care.
“This decision to gut women’s health programs is inconsistent with the Republican’s stated goal of saving federal funds. The simple fact is family planning programs like Title X save money. For every public dollar invested in family planning, taxpayers save nearly $4.*
“The House Republican leadership is also proposing to completely eliminate the recently established teen pregnancy prevention community grants, which provide evidence-based sex education to American teenagers. These programs ensure that teens have the accurate information and the necessary tools they need to avoid unintended pregnancy and lead healthy and productive lives.
“The Continuing Resolution also eliminates American contributions to the United Nation’s Population Fund (UNFPA), cuts essential international family planning and reproductive health services by more than $200 million, and re-imposes the Bush era global gag rule on international family planning providers. The reinstatement of the Bush-era policy would once again cripple the ability of organizations around the globe to provide lifesaving care to the most vulnerable populations in the world.
“Instead of supporting programs that reduce the number of unintended pregnancies, House leaders are aggressively pursuing policies that would dismantle the very programs that are responsible for preventing 973,000 unintended pregnancies and 406,000 abortions each year.
“The House Leadership’s proposal to eliminate funding for Planned Parenthood and Title X, gut teen pregnancy prevention community grants, and undermine critical international family planning programs is bad policy, bad politics, and flat out immoral. That’s why we strongly urge Congress to reject H.R.1.”
Planned Parenthood is the nation’s leading sexual and reproductive health care provider and advocate. We believe that everyone has the right to choose when or whether to have a child, and that every child should be wanted and loved. Planned Parenthood affiliates operate more than 800 health centers nationwide, providing medical services and sexuality education for millions of women, men, and teenagers each year. We also work with allies worldwide to ensure that all women and men have the right and the means to meet their sexual and reproductive health care needs.