Letter: Protect Title X Funding

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Every day, Planned Parenthood provides essential sexual and reproductive health care such as cancer screenings, birth control, STI testing and treatment, abortion, annual exams and more. However, recent unprecedented attacks against Planned Parenthood have put health care at risk for patients across the country.

Since the start of 2019, we’ve seen not only attacks on access to safe, legal abortion, but threats to affordable birth control and preventive services as well. In the first half of this year, we have seen the enactment of 26 state abortion bans, as well as a “gag rule” which would strip Title X funding for affordable birth control, cancer screenings, and STI testing and treatment services from healthcare providers, like Planned Parenthood.

I am against these attacks for the main reason that health care is a human right. There is already a massive divide between who does and doesn’t have health care in this country and these attacks just worsen this truth. The majority of patients who access care through Title X identify as people of color, Hispanic or Latino. It’s impossible to separate this from the other actions this administration has taken that hurt people of color with low incomes—such as the calls for a border wall, rampant voter suppression and attempts to “defund” Planned Parenthood.

We need to fight back and fight back hard. Congress decided in 2010 that it is illegal to mandate rules that violate the ethical standards of health care professionals, as the gag rule does. Congress must stand up once more and act to fight back against the “gag” rule.

I urge you to call on your representative to tell them their constituents are depending them to protect Title X funding.

—Emily Burkhard

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