In his continued fight against Planned Parenthood, today Donald Trump signed a bill stripping Title X funds. This is a major win for Republicans and a huge blow to Planned Parenthood and organizations like it which rely on funding from Title X — which is why looking for ways to help Planned Parenthood and other organizations affected by the bill is so important. Access to basic, essential healthcare should be required, not optional.
While the Title X bill doesn’t directly “defund” Planned Parenthood, it undoes a protection put in place by former President Obama. That protection prevented states from blocking health care centers from receiving Title X funding based on political reason (i.e. centers that provide abortion services). The bill Trump just signed revokes that protection, allowing states to decide how to allocate Title X funds. That means a state can decide not to give Title X funds to facilities like Planned Parenthood because those clinics provide abortions.
“Four million people depend on the Title X family planning program, and by signing this bill, President Trump disregards their health and well-being,” said Dawn Laguens, Executive Vice President of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, in response to this new bill.
The signing of this bill has consequences beyond political showmanship. Not only does it solidify the Trump administration’s fight against Planned Parenthood and legal abortion, it will impact the lives of women, people, and families whose health and well-being rely on these clinics.
If you want to stand in solidarity with those women, people, and families and against the measures Trump just took, here are seven ways you can help places like Planned Parenthood that are directly affected by Title X.
Planned Parenthood has this handy guide on what you need to know about Title X. You should also sign up for email alerts from the Planned Parenthood Action Fund. They’ll keep you informed on legislation like the bill that was just signed. If you want updates right to your timeline, Planned Parenthood on Twitter @PPact.
2Donate to the Planned Parenthood Action Fund
The Planned Parenthood Action Fund works specifically to support abortion, birth control, and health care equity on a governmental level. Through education, litigation, and community organization, the Planned Parenthood Action Fund is working to make reproductive health a priority. You can donate here.
3Contact Your Reps
Congress is on recess until April 23. While they’re in your neck of the woods, let them know where you stand. Contact your state and local representatives so they know you’re paying attention. Send them a postcard or your Planned Parenthood donation certificate. Give them a call. You can follow this script and let your Congresspeople know that you, their constituent, do not support the signing of this bill.
4Support Your Local Planned Parenthood Clinics
Make your next health care appointment at your local Planned Parenthood clinic. Schedule a monthly monetary donation to your local clinic. Make sure the clinics in your community stay open.
5Share Stats On What Title X Actually Does
Not only does Title X save the government money through preventative care screenings (about $13.6 billion), it prevents one million unplanned pregnancies each year by providing affordable birth control. Thanks to Title X funding, one million women also received breast exams in 2015. Six million people were provided with STI tests. Revoking Title X funding from these clinics on the grounds that they provide abortions in turn revokes funding for the other crucial services Planned Parenthood provides.
6Share Stats on Who is Affected Most By This Bill
80 percent of patients who benefit from Title X have “incomes below 150 percent of the federal poverty level,” according to Planned Parenthood. As the organization's statement says, revoking these protections especially hurts “young people, people of color, those who live in rural areas, and people with low incomes.” Planned Parenthood is critical to health care access, as these patients usually cannot go anywhere else.
7Volunteer with Planned Parenthood
Find out what volunteer opportunities are available at your local Planned Parenthood clinic. You can also become an abortion clinic escort, providing support and helping people get the care they need.