On Feb. 17 the U.S. House of Representatives voted to bar Planned Parenthood health centers from all federal funding for birth control, cancer screenings, HIV testing, and other lifesaving care.
Why should you care?
Planned Parenthood works to advance women's reproductive health and rights. If they cut the funding to Planned Parenthood, three million women, men, and teens will be at risk of losing access to basic care.
This issue is not an abortion debate as abortions account for only a small fraction of the services provided by Planned Parenthood and no tax payer money goes toward abortions. The organization mainly provides contraception, screening for cancer and testing for sexually transmitted diseases. Many of the clients are low-income women with few other options for non-emergency health care.
The majority of the services provided by the nation's leading sexual and reproductive health care advocate are spent on contraception. In 2008, it was reported that contraception constituted 35 percent of total services, STI/STD testing and treatment constituted 34 percent, cancer testing and screening constituted 17 percent; and other women's health procedures, including pregnancy, prenatal, midlife, and infertility were 10 percent. Two percent to three percent of visits involve abortions.
Planned Parenthood loosing federal funding would be devastating for many families. Other clinics are already overflowing with lower income families that have no other way besides Planned Parenthood for health care and contraception. They have no doctor of their own to go to, and they often go without any knowledge about their sexual health.
Cutting federal funding to this organization will not help any conservative pro-life cause, but it will wreck havoc on the people who depend on Planned Parenthood for health care and sex education.
Watch the video from ABC about Congresswoman Jackie Speier sharing her experience with abortion.