Rep. Tulsi Gabbard Votes to Protect Nationwide Access to Family Planning
Washington, DC—Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard (HI-02) released the following statement after voting against H.J.Res.43, which would get rid of important protections in place to ensure Americans across the country have access to family planning and preventive health services:
“Title X grants support family planning and preventive health services to millions of low-income, uninsured, and underinsured Americans each year, including more than 18,000 people in Hawaiʻi. This resolution would limit access to healthcare and weaken important Title X family planning programs nationwide. No matter what state you live in, every American should be able to receive the same access to health care and critical preventative health services.”
Rep. Tulsi Gabbard has received 100% legislative scores from Planned Parenthood and NARAL for her votes to protect a woman's right to choose, women’s health access, family planning programs, and more.
Background: H.J.Res.43, a resolution under the Congressional Review Act, would reverse a rule issued through the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under President Obama to ensure that patients can access Title X family planning and preventive services through any Title X-qualified provider. These grants provide funding for voluntary family planning projects which provide a broad range of family planning methods and preventive health services that include natural family planning methods, infertility services, and services for adolescents; breast and cervical cancer screening; STD and HIV prevention education, counseling, testing, and referral; adolescent abstinence counseling; and other preventive health services. The services do not include abortion. Currently, ninety-five service grantees provide required Title X services through a network of nearly 4,200 clinics nationwide. There is at least one Title X-funded family planning clinic in approximately 75% of all counties in the U.S. Since 2011, thirteen states have restricted certain health service providers from the Title X program for reasons other than their ability to provide care. The HHS rule was finalized in response to ongoing litigation in those states over these restrictions.
Recent data on the impact of Title X in Hawaiʻi shows that 83% of Hawaiʻi residents served through the Title X network have incomes at or below 100% of the federal poverty level, and that cuts to Title X funding would harm tens of thousands of low-income families throughout Hawaiʻi.