Assembly Republicans Vote Again to Block Essential Health Care Services at Planned Parenthood
This is the third bill to pass on a party line vote that specifically cuts funding for preventative health care for patients at Planned Parenthood.
MADISON – On Thursday, Republicans in the Assembly once again voted to block women and men from the health care they depend on at Planned Parenthood by passing Senate Bill (SB 238). SB 238 seeks to drastically reduce the reimbursement paid by to Planned Parenthood for prescription drugs including birth control to unsustainable levels.
“The vote to end funding for Planned Parenthood’s essential preventive health care is deeply troubling and is a part of an intentional, calculated agenda to end women’s access to birth control and all reproductive care in Wisconsin,” said Tanya Atkinson, executive director of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Wisconsin (PPAWI).
This is the third bill to pass on a party line vote that specifically cuts funding for preventative health care for patients at Planned Parenthood, Wisconsin’s oldest, most trusted nonprofit reproductive health care provider.
“Opponents of women’s health are trying to hurt Planned Parenthood through these ongoing political attacks, but who they are truly hurting is Wisconsin women and men who are in need of essential health care and have no other place to go,” said Atkinson. “Women like Kathleen in Milwaukee who was diagnosed with cancer and provided with lifesaving referrals thanks to Planned Parenthood, or Mary in Sheboygan who, as a single mom raising a family with limited resources, depends on Planned Parenthood for annual wellness exams and affordable birth control.”
This bill, coupled with legislation to block Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin (PPWI) from receiving Title X funds, is the latest in a long line of attacks on funding for essential health care. In 2011, Gov. Scott Walker eliminated all state funding for services provided by Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin, forcing the closure of five rural family planning health centers and leaving 3,104 patients without a community based health care provider.
Governor Walker is expected to sign both defunding bills, SB 238 and SB 237, passed last month. Neither bill can take effect without action by the federal government, which may thwart the intent by Republicans to close Planned Parenthood health centers.
“This vote underscores just how important it is that we elect leaders who value the health of women and families and trust women to make their own health care decisions,” said Atkinson. “Despite these continued political attacks, Planned Parenthood remains committed to continuing to provide the health care our patients have depended on for 80 years to keep them safe, healthy and strong.”
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.