Shea-Porter Votes “No” on Yet Another House Republican Attack on Women’s Health
WASHINGTON, DC -- Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter (NH-01) released the following statement after opposing House Republicans’ attempt to overturn a key women’s health protection that currently prevents states from cutting off federal funding for Planned Parenthood and other community health providers.
“We should be working together on solutions to the serious challenges we face as a nation, but instead, it’s another day in Congress, another attack on women’s health,” said Shea-Porter. “The protection House Republicans opposed today was developed specifically to defend New Hampshire women and families’ access to care from ideological attacks, and today’s vote makes it clear that such protection is needed now more than ever.”
The rule House Republicans voted to roll back clarifies that state governments must allocate federal Title X funds based on a provider’s ability to perform family planning services effectively, instead of for ideological reasons.
The Obama administration developed the protection in response to several states’ ideologically motivated attacks on women’s access to care and attempts to defund Planned Parenthood, including the New Hampshire Executive Council’s 2011 cancellation of Planned Parenthood of Northern New England’s contract. That vote denied women in several regions of the state access to crucial preventive care, leaving them with zero providers for several months.
Federal Title X funding primarily supports family planning and related preventive health services, primarily for low-income women and adolescents. Last year, Title X allowed more than 4 million Americans to access basic primary and preventive health care services such as cancer screenings, birth control, and testing for sexually transmitted infections.
The independent, nonpartisan Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the National Academy of Sciences states that Title X family planning can prevent unintended and high-risk pregnancies, thereby reducing fetal, infant, and maternal mortality and morbidity. IOM also stated that the appropriate use of contraception reduces abortion rates and cites "ample evidence that family planning services are cost-effective.” In 2014, Title X family planning services helped avert an estimated 171,800 unintended teen pregnancies. The Guttmacher Institute estimates that without Title X clinics' services, the 2014 U.S. teen pregnancy rate would have been 30% higher.