Missouri Senator Blunt leads committee that proposes cutting family planning, sex ed

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 26, 2015

Contact:       Sheila Kostas: 913.345.4635, Ann Wade: 314.531.7526 x340

Overland Park, KS—Missouri Senator Roy Blunt is helping Missourians through his proposal to increase National Institutes of Health funding. However, he is misdirected in his charge to cut effective and cost saving family planning and sex education programs that work. Senator Blunt chairs the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies, a committee that this week issued a 2016 fiscal year funding proposal that would dramatically reduce the nation’s oldest and most effective family planning program, as well as gut funding for teen pregnancy prevention and sex education programs—while increasing funding for ineffective abstinence-only programs by 300 percent. This follows similar cuts in the House version of the bill last week; with both the House and Senate versions voted on in full committee this week.

Teen pregnancy and birth rates are at a historic 40-year low, thanks, in part, to increased investment in evidence-based sex education programs and access to effective forms of birth control. Yet this week, Senator Blunt and the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies joined their House colleagues in a move that dramatically harms the health of women and of families.

Statement from Mary M Kogut, President and CEO, Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri:

“Hurting women’s access to health care as Senator Blunt is doing, hurts not only women, but the families who depend on them. When we chip away at our nation’s oldest family planning program, it has a devastating impact on those who need access the most. Simply put, these proposals would gut the nation’s family planning program, which serves nearly 4.6 million Americans.”

Statement from Laura McQuade, President and CEO, Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri:

“It is outrageous Senator Blunt would gut the nation’s teen pregnancy prevention and sex education programs, just as we’re making historic progress reducing teen pregnancy in Missouri as well as nationally. Senator Blunt’s proposal would turn back that progress and hurt our young people by gutting funding for evidence-based sex education while doubling down on abstinence-only programs we know don’t work.”

Since last Tuesday, more than 34,000 Planned Parenthood supporters have taken action, contacting their members of Congress and telling them not to cut funding for family planning. Eighty-one percent of American voters favor continuing federal government efforts to help women who can’t afford it get access to birth control.

Last week the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies issued a 2016 fiscal year funding proposal that would eliminate the nation’s family planning program, leaving nearly 4.6 million people without access to the preventive health care — including family planning services, well-woman exams, life-saving cancer screenings, birth control, and testing and treatments for sexually transmitted infections — they currently rely on. That bill would also decimate funding for the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Initiative’s sex education programs.

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Planned Parenthood works hard each and every day to provide essential — often life-saving — health care services. In fact, last year over 70,000 women, men and teens came to Planned Parenthood affiliates in Missouri for services such as cancer screenings, STD testing, sex education, and birth control.

BACKGROUND:

  • The Senate budget proposal guts the very programs that have been working, including family planning funding, evidence-based sex education, and preventive health care for those who have nowhere else to turn:
  • Teen Pregnancy Prevention (TPP). The bill cuts this program by $81 million, or 80 percent. Well-designed and well-implemented sex education programs — the type of education provided by Planned Parenthood through the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Initiative (TPPI) — can decrease sexual risk behaviors among teens, including delaying sexual intercourse, increasing condom and birth control use, and reducing the number of sexual partners and frequency of sex. At the same time, the bill increases funding for abstinence-only programs – which have been shown to be ineffective and frequently medically inaccurate – from $5 million to $20 million, a 300 percent increase.
  • Family Planning. The bill cuts funding for the nation’s family planning program (Title X) by 10 percent or $29 million, to $258 million. It is estimated that cut would deny comprehensive family planning and preventive health services to 430,000 people and would increase the estimated number of unintended pregnancies by over 82,000 next year.
  • Affordable Care Act (ACA). The bill includes new language to prohibit HHS from spending any of the funding in this bill to support State Based Marketplaces. This rider is in addition to the bill’s elimination of all ACA-related funding, and would affect access to care for millions of Americans.
  • The nation’s family planning program offers preventive health care services to those most in need.
  • Ninety percent of the people our nation’s family planning program serves have incomes below 200 percent of the federal poverty level, and 63 percent are uninsured.
  • In fact, 6 in 10 women who access care from a family planning health center consider it their main source of health care.
  • The nation’s family planning program works.
  • Through birth control and contraceptive counseling, the national family planning program has helped to prevent 1.1 million unintended pregnancies each year.
  • In 2013 alone, the national family planning program enabled health centers to provide 1 million Pap tests, breast exams to 1.6 million women, 2.6 million lifesaving cancer screenings, and 6.8 million tests for sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including 1.2 million HIV tests.
  • Planned Parenthood is a proud partner of the nation’s family planning program. Planned Parenthood health centers provide preventive care to approximately 1.5 million women served by the nation’s family planning program — roughly one-third of the program’s clients overall.
  • Without the services provided by publicly funded family planning, the U.S. rates of unintended pregnancy, unplanned births, and abortions would be 66 percent higher.
  • Chipping away at these programs has an impact
  • As a result of funding reductions in the nation’s family planning program between FY2010 and FY2013, 667,000 patients were lost from the program without indication that they sought care from other health care providers.
  • Investing in family planning is good for women’s health and for the economy.
  • For every public dollar invested in family planning, approximately seven are saved in Medicaid-related costs.
  • In 2010, the government saved $13.6 billion as a result of family planning services investment.
  • Americans want to see this program funded.
  • Eighty-one percent of American voters favor continuing federal government efforts to help women who can’t afford it get access to birth control.
  • Since last Tuesday, more than 34,000 Planned Parenthood supporters took action, contacting their members of Congress and telling them not to cut funding for family planning.
  • When Congress tried to eliminate the nation’s family planning program back in 2011, there was an incredible outpouring from the American public. People don’t want Congress to take health care away from millions of people, or to walk away from the historic progress we’re making in reducing teen pregnancy.
  • Evidence-based sex education works — and has helped us make historic progress toward reducing the teen pregnancy rate.
  • Thanks to increased access to contraception and comprehensive sex education, teen pregnancy rates are at a 40-year low. Not only that, but more young people are delaying sexual activity, and using birth control when they do have sex.
  • Well-designed and well-implemented sex education programs — the type of education provided by Planned Parenthood through the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Initiative (TPPI) — can decrease sexual risk behaviors among teens, including delaying sexual intercourse, increasing condom and birth control use, and reducing the number of sexual partners and frequency of sex.
  • Research has found that teens who report receiving more comprehensive approaches to sex education are 50 percent less likely to experience an unintended pregnancy.
  • Abstinence-only programs don’t work.
  • There is no evidence to date that abstinence-only programs delay teen sexual activity. Moreover, research shows that abstinence-only programs may deter contraceptive use among sexually active teens, increasing their risk of unintended pregnancy and STIs.
  • Americans want evidence-based sex education and prevention programs.
  • Sex education is supported by the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics — and by a majority of Americans, including more than 90 percent of both parents and teens.

Planned Parenthood Responds to Governor Brownback’s Cancellation of LGBT State Employee Protections

Topeka, KS — Planned Parenthood Advocates of Kansas and Mid-Missouri today responded to Governor Brownback’s Executive Order 15-02, which cancels discrimination protections for LGBT workers. “This order puts hard working LGBT state employees at risk for firing or harassment not because of their job performance, but because of who they are and who they love. Governor Brownback’s actions are outrageous and unacceptable,” said Laura McQuade, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Kansas and Mid-Missouri.

“We stand with LGBT state workers, their friends and families, and all those working for equality in Kansas,” said McQuade. “Planned Parenthood strives to create a safe and supportive environment in the health care community. We encourage our supporters across the state to make their disappointment known to Governor Brownback, and we will continue to work for a state that values the lives of all people, regardless of their gender identity or sexual orientation.”

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Planned Parenthood is a vital resource for our community and for women and families throughout Kansas and Missouri. We are a trusted advocate and source of health care and education for thousands of women, men, and children. For 80 years, women have relied on Planned Parenthood to keep themselves and their families safe and healthy.

Join the Dissent!

jointhedissent1

Join the Dissent!

The Supreme Court has issued a ruling that gives employers the power to deny women the new birth control benefits of the Affordable Care Act — allowing bosses to force their personal beliefs on employees.

The five justices who ruled against women’s health are out of step with most Americans — the public overwhelmingly supports the birth control benefit by a nearly two-to-one margin. Justice Ginsburg spoke for us in her powerful dissent when she said, “[The court’s decision] would deny legions of women who do not hold their employers’ beliefs access to contraceptive coverage.”

Do you agree? Join the dissent, and send a message to lawmakers, employers, and the Supreme Court: our medical decisions belong to us, not our bosses.

Planned Parenthood Advocates of Kansas and Mid-Missouri 2014 Endorsements

Planned Parenthood Advocates of Kansas and Mid-Missouri (PPAKM) is proud to announce our endorsements for the 2014 election. Endorsement decisions are made based on candidate surveys and interviews, voting records (where available), and other criteria such as viability. If you have any questions or concerns about our endorsement process, please do not hesitate to contact PPAKM Director of Public Affairs Sheila Kostas at sheila.kostas@ppkm.org or 913.345.4635.

To learn which district you belong to and who represents you now, please visit Open Kansas in Kansas and Missouri Legislator Lookup in Missouri.

Missouri Endorsed Candidates

Federal Office

US Congressional District 5—Emmanuel Cleaver (D)

Missouri Senate
District 34 (St. Joseph)—Robert Stuber (D)

Missouri State House of Representatives
District 6 (Moberly)—Robert Harrington (D)
District 12 (Smithville)—Sandy Van Wagner (D)
District 14 (Riverside)—Stephanie Isaacson (D)
District 15 (Gladstone)—Jon Carpenter (D)
District 17 (Liberty)—Mark Ellebracht (D)
District 18 (Kansas City)—Lauren Arthur (D)

District 19 (Kansas City)—John Rizzo (D)
District 21 (Independence)—Ira Anders (D)
District 23 (Kansas City)—Randy Dunn (D)
District 24 (Kansas City)—Judy Morgan (D)
District 25 (Kansas City)—Jeremy LaFaver (D)
District 26 (Kansas City)—Gail McCann Beatty (D)
District 27 (Kansas City)—Bonnaye Mims (D)
District 28 (Raytown)—Tom McDonald (D)
District 29 (Independence)—John Sutton (D)
District 34 (Lee’s Summit)—Dale Mercer (D)
District 35 (Lee’s Summit)—Ken Duvall (D)
District 36 (Kansas City)—Kevin McManus (D)
District 43 (Kingdom City)—Ed Lockwood (D)
District 44 (Columbia)—Tom Pauley (D)
District 45 (Columbia)—Kip Kendrick (D)
District 46 (Columbia)—Stephen Webber (D)
District 47 (Rocheport)—John Wright (D)
District 49 (New Bloomfield)—Gracia Yancey Backer (D)
District 51 (Warrensburg)—Gary Grigsby (D)

PPAKM Kansas Endorsed Candidates

Federal Office

US Congressional District 2—Margie Wakefield (D)

US Congressional District 3—Kelly Kultala (D)

Statewide Office

Governor/Lieutenant Governor—Paul Davis/Jill Docking (D)
Attorney General—A.J. Kotich (D)
Insurance Commissioner—Dennis Anderson (D)

Kansas House of Representatives
District 3 (Pittsburg)—Julie Menghini (D)
District 10 (Lawrence)—John Wilson (D)
District 12 (Augusta)—Eden Fuson (D)
District 14 (Olathe)—Merlin Ring (D)
District 17 (Shawnee)—Larry Meeker (D)
District 19 (Overland Park)—Stephanie Clayton (R)
District 20 (Overland Park)—Elizabeth Arnold (D)
District 21 (Mission Hills)—Barbara Bollier (R)
District 22 (Overland Park)—Nancy Lusk (D)
District 23 (Lenexa)—Amber Versola (D)
District 25 (Fairway)—Melissa Rooker (R)
District 27 (Stillwell)—Theresa Hohl (D)
District 29 (Overland Park)—Heather Meyer (D)
District 30 (Lenexa)—Liz Dickinson (D)
District 31 (Kansas City)—Louis Ruiz (D)
District 32 (Kansas City)—Pam Curtis (D)
District 34 (Kansas City)—Valdenia Winn (D)
District 35 (Kansas City)—Broderick Henderson (D)
District 38 (Kansas City)—Jan Pringle (D)
District 39 (Shawnee)—Vicki Hiatt (D)
District 43 (Gardner)—Caitlin Trujillo (D)
District 44 (Lawrence)—Barbara Ballard (D)
District 45 (Lawrence)—Tom Sloan (R)
District 46 (Lawrence)—Boog Highberger (D)
District 53 (Topeka)—Annie Tietze (D)
District 55 (Topeka)—Annie Kuether (D)
District 56 (Topeka)—Virgil Weigel (D)
District 58 (Topeka)—Harold Lane (D)
District 60 (Emporia)—Don Hill (R)
District 66 (Manhattan) —Sydney Carlin (D)
District 73 (Canton)—Von Peterson (D)
District 76 (Emporia)—Teresa Briggs (D)
District 78 (Olathe)—Jim Poe (D)
District 79 (Winfield)—Ed Trimmer (D)
District 81 (Derby)—Lynn Wells (D)
District 82 (Mulvane)—Danette Harris (D)
District 83 (Wichita)—Carolyn Bridges (D)
District 84 (Wichita)—Gail Finney (D)
District 86 (Wichita)—Jim Ward (D)
District 87 (Wichita)—Charles Jenney (D)
District 88 (Wichita)—Patricia M. Sloop (D)
District 89 (Wichita)—Roderick A. Houston (D)
District 92 (Wichita)—John Carmichael (D)
District 93 (Wichita)—Sammy Flaharty (D)
District 96 (Wichita)—Brandon Whipple (D)
District 102 (Hutchinson)—Brian Davis (D)
District 103 (Wichita)—Ponka-We Victors (D)
District 105 (Wichita)—Sherry Livingston (D)
District 112 (Great Bend)—Steve Muehleisen (D)
District 119 (Dodge City)—John Thomas (D)