Senator Kapenga and Representative Jacque: Women and Men Need and Value Planned Parenthood
Reason for Defunding Planned Parenthood Falls Flat with Wisconsinites
Madison, WI – During a hearing to further defund Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin, bill author Sen. Chris Kapenga said Planned Parenthood is not needed because “everyone in Wisconsin has access to health care.” Kapenga went on to say that if anyone has evidence of an instance where a person was not able to access health care to let him know.
Today, Planned Parenthood delivered over 235 letters to Senator Kapenga from Wisconsin women and men who have struggled to access needed health care. Many respondents live pay check to pay check, can’t afford health insurance, co-pays, or simply don’t have money left over for essential health care after paying for food, housing, child care, and transportation costs. These women and men sent a clear message to Sen. Kapenga that “Planned Parenthood was there for me when I had nowhere else to go.”
“As a health care provider that works with women and men every day, Planned Parenthood knows firsthand the need for quality and affordable health care,” said Tanya Atkinson, Executive Director for Planned Parenthood Advocates of Wisconsin. “That is why we are working so hard to protect the community’s continued access to the essential health care they need. If Sen. Kapenga and Rep. Jacque really want to understand the importance of Planned Parenthood and women’s health care access, all they have to do is listen to Wisconsin’s community-based health care providers and the voices of our patients.”
Excerpts from letters delivered to Senator Kapenga:
“When I couldn’t afford to pay for cancer screenings, I turned to Planned Parenthood. When my doctor couldn’t get me in to see her for months, I turned to Planned Parenthood.” Sarah L., Madison, WI
“I hope that you and those you love never find themselves in a situation where they are frightened and have no one to turn to. I can personally attest that Planned Parenthood was there for me when I was a victim of an attack.” Meredith, Columbus, WI
“If I hadn’t gone to Planned Parenthood, I may not have lived past my 25th birthday. I went to Planned Parenthood and they found my cervical cancer.” Christy M., Hartford, WI
“Maybe you don’t know what it is like to struggle, but I do. I cannot afford the ACA insurance and without Planned Parenthood I would have not been able to afford care for my woman issues. I’m at cervical cancer risk and I get a colposcopy at Planned Parenthood in West Allis every year.” Kristin H., Sussex, WI
“During college I had insurance through my mom’s employer, but it did not cover contraception because she worked for a religiously-affiliated hospital. Planned Parenthood helped me stay on contraception and get regular checkups all through college.” Mel B., Madison, WI
“Without Planned Parenthood my daughter would not have gotten needed care. It simply didn’t exist elsewhere.” Wendy B., Milwaukee, WI
“I DO NOT have any other health care than what I receive at Planned Parenthood. Access to reproductive health care is essential for those without any other health care and without it, many people will be more at risk for unplanned pregnancy and untreated STIs.” Dusty O., Columbus, WI
“I do not qualify for state insurance and already live pay check to pay check.” Holly H., New Berlin, WI
“Since moving to Vernon County twenty years ago, I have had an extremely difficult time finding health care. Although I have Medicare, I cannot afford to use it, as the premiums cost more than I can really afford, and there is no way for me to pay the yearly deductible, let alone co-payments. So for more than 15 years now, I have not had access to healthcare.” Karen F., Hillsboro, WI
“Thank god they found my abnormal, precancerous cells on my cervix, or the state would be paying all my cancer bills!!! Found early, treated early.” Cindy B., Kewaskum, WI
“I am a birth mother, who gave up my baby for adoption. I didn’t have insurance, so I went to Planned Parenthood. They confirmed my pregnancy and referred me to the adoption agency I worked with to place my daughter.” Peggy S., Milwaukee, WI
“I had 2 small children and I was living in a car with a 3 month old baby and a 1 and a half year old. Planned Parenthood was the only one who was there for me when I was in need.” Pamela M., Brown Deer, WI
“I DO NOT have access to health care and if it weren’t for Planned Parenthood and the amazing services they provide for my community, myself and MANY, MANY men and women would be out of a place to go to get the health care we not only need but deserve!” Amber S., Eau Claire, WI
“I was uninsured, but I knew I needed medical care and Planned Parenthood was affordable enough that I could go and get medical help.” Florence S., Madison, WI
“Without Planned Parenthood, I wouldn’t have been aware of my condition and, left untreated, I would have died of cancer. 30 years later, I am a high achieving woman who can contribute to my family and community.” Kathleen W. Milwaukee, WI
“As a young single mother without a lot of money, I use Planned Parenthood for my health care needs including my annual physical and cancer check.” Mary S., Sheboygan, WI
“I am self employed and counted on Planned Parenthood to give me an exam that wouldn’t break the bank.” Ann H., Mequon, WI
“Many years ago, when I had nowhere else to turn and no health insurance, I walked into a Planned Parenthood. I was suffering a miscarriage (I didn’t even realize I was pregnant) and scared out of my mind.” Brenda T., Madison, WI
Planned Parenthood Advocates of Wisconsin is the advocacy arm of Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin. PPAWI engages in legislative and educational activity and works to elect candidates to office that support these goals.
Mentioned in This Press Release
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This action comes on the heels of a major health care victory, stopping the Affordable Care Act repeal bill.