By: ELLAH FOSTER
Amid the everlasting controversy surrounding Planned Parenthood’s various contraceptive services, there are many other benefits that tend to go unnoticed by anti-abortion protestors.
For many years, Planned Parenthood has received backlash and harsh criticism for their work, mainly focused on the abortion services provided. Protesters often congregate in front of facilities with signs, and sometimes the crowds get threatening and local law enforcement is called, according to an article by Huffington Post.
The Susan B. Anthony list, a right-wing organization that works to end all abortions in the U.S. through its political action committee, has been trying to shut down Planned Parenthood for years. In 2014, The SBA List reported that abortions make up 94 percent of Planned Parenthood’s services. However, this was found to be completely untrue when Planned Parenthood released fact sheets stating that only 3 percent of their total business is performing abortions.
Contraception, in total, only equated to 34 percent of the services for Planned Parenthood in 2015, according to the Government Accountability Office. If less than 40 percent is for abortions, then what else does this reproductive health care center provide for the men and women of America?
Sex education, cancer prevention, Sexually Transmitted Infection testing and adoption referrals are all a part of why millions in the U.S. turn to these clinics. In a single year, the nonprofit provides over four million tests and treatments for STIs, 320,000 breast exams and 295,000 Pap Tests to millions of patients, according to the official Planned Parenthood website. Defunding this organization would be catastrophic—not just morally for taking a step backwards for women’s rights, but for the health of the younger generation in this country.
Title X is widely known as the only federal grant that is solely dedicated to preventative health services and family planning. It is an opportunity for low-income people to have resources when it comes to reproductive or preventative health, ABC News reports. Without Title X and Planned Parenthood, families with lower incomes won’t have any place to turn to for this type of health service and support.
In April, President Donald Trump signed a law that was targeted at cutting federal funding for Planned Parenthood or any other group that performs abortions. This nullified what President Barack Obama put in place before he left office, which kept state and local governments from withholding federal funding, according to CNN.
Trump even acknowledged that the health organization helps millions of women. However, he still says he would defund it simply because he is anti-abortion. If Trump can recognize how crucial Planned Parenthood’s funding is for the people of America, why would he choose to defund it that easily? Even the president doesn’t understand that there is more to Planned Parenthood than just terminating pregnancies.
Vice President Mike Pence has been actively attempting to shut down the nonprofit as well. He took the first federal measure to defund Planned Parenthood in 2007, but that bill was very unsuccessful, according to Huffington Post. Regardless, his actions have furthered the intensity that anti-abortion crusaders bring against the clinic.
Anti-choice or not, it shouldn’t be difficult to see what an enormous impact Planned Parenthood has on families across America. Without the organization, millions of people would be left helpless without their services or guidance. Yes, they provide abortions. No, not everyone agrees with that. But why are all the other aspects of the nonprofit that millions turn to blatantly ignored?