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Texas: Did You Know?

Did you know that a Texas state senator is attempting to stop Planned Parenthood from providing family-planning services?

In August 2010, anti-choice state Sen. Bob Deuell (R) initiated an attempt to stop a number of family-planning clinics from receiving funding through a state program – just because some of their affiliates provided abortion services.

The Women’s Health Program (WHP) in Texas provides family-planning services, health screenings, and testing for sexually transmitted infections to individuals on Medicaid. Since 2007, family-planning clinics across the state – including 40 Planned Parenthood centers – have received funds from this program, enabling them to provide crucial health-care services to low-income women and men across the state.

Unfortunately, anti-choice Sen. Deuell recently asked the state Attorney General to re-visit a 2005 state law containing  a gag-rule provision that prohibits all entities receiving funding through the WHP from counseling or referring women for abortion services. Although Planned Parenthood has been part of the program since its inception in 2007, Sen Deuell is now pushing to cut off all funding to the 40 Planned Parenthood clinics in the program – none of which provide abortion services.

If Sen. Deuell prevails, Planned Parenthood could be forced to return the $17.6 million that the organization has received in funding since 2007, due to a provision in the 2005 law allowing the Health and Human Services Commission in Texas to “recoup WHP funds that it determines were paid to providers that have performed elective abortions.”

Texas State Sen. Asks AG To Clarify 2005 Law On Family Planning Funding, Medical News Today, August 4, 2010, at (last accessed January 11, 2011).

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