Family Planning Coalition Granted Title X Funding
On Monday, the Women's Health and Family Planning Association of Texas was awarded a federal grant that would enable to continue to provide family planning and health services to more than 160,000 Texas women. The group filed a formal request after Rick Perry cut nearly two-thirds or more than $73 million from the state's family planning budget. This unprecedented and unwarranted cut forced several Planned Parenthood clinics to close. Also, the cut mortally wounded various other family planning clinics throughout the state including those that are located in the most rural parts of Texas. These clinics serve the most vulnerable women in the state. More than five dozens of these clinics closed. Thousands of women lost access to healthcare.
The federal goverment awarded the aforementioned group the entire Title X grant. Title X funding is carved out solely for family planning efforts. This means this federal funding: "will be used for family planning counseling, birth control and preventative healthcare measures like Well Woman exams. It can't be used for abortions, and never has been, by anyone, no matter what your state lawmakers might tell you."
The coalition is comprised of 34 providers in over 121 clinics all over the state. The dispersement of the funds will be based on how many clients the particular clinic services. It is reported that this is the only federal funding stream dedicated for the exclusive use of family planning services, with low income and uninsured patients having priority.
Interestingly, the state government assumed they would be awarded the Title X funding despite proving that they don't see the value in family planning. Though they exhausted every legal effort to virtually end family planning in Texas, they still don't quite seem to understand its importance for Texas women. Their decision to bypass the state government is an impressive precedent set by the organization. Really, they had no other choice.
The legal battle shows the group's commitment to their clients. They did not go gently and they shouldn't! Good for them! Our government failed the women of Texas. It is nice to see an organization of family planning clinics that refused to give into the catastrophic tantrums of an inept governor and administration.
Rick Perry should take note and realize that the people of Texas (as well as the federal government) do not agree with his anti-choice and anti-sex policies.