This week in the Texas Senate bills will be heard that re-authorize tax dollars for our state’s Women’s Health Program (WHP). Several avenues of funding with Texas tax dollars are available to Planned Parenthood; however, this legislation involves approximately $12 million. It is the view of our organization that these funds are more prudently spent being distributed to public clinics and primary care physicians in our state than to Planned Parenthood facilities. Currently forty Planned Parenthood facilities absorb 43% of the funds dedicated to low income health care through the Women’s Health Program (WHP). With the addition of a simple amendment to one of these bills, funds can be directed to facilities that do more than birth control. In addition to screening, they will be able to treat illnesses like diabetes and tuberculosis, as well as do pap smears and STD treatment.
The effort to defund Planned Parenthood will be difficult because of the position of some Texas senators. I am enlisting every member of Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee (CWALAC) of Texas to help work to put Texas tax dollars into the hands of care-givers who treat the whole woman.
The first action you should take should be to pray for those Senators who are closely involved: Sen. Jane Nelson, Chairman of the Health and Human Services Committee, and Committee members: Sen. Bob Deuell, Sen. Joan Huffman, Sen. Robert Nichols, Sen. Dan Patrick, Sen. Jose Rodriguez, Sen. Carlos Uresti, Sen. Royce West, and Sen. Judith Zaffarini.
The second action you should take should be to call your state senator (Capitol Switchboard for senators: 512-463-0100) and ask him/her to support efforts to limit the use of our tax dollars going to health care for low-income women so that it flows to those care-givers who can give comprehensive health care not just family planning. Click here to find your state Senator; once you put in your zip code go to Texas State Senators.
The third action you should take should be to educate those in your circle of influence to take the same action.
Tuesday and Wednesday, April 12 and 13, several leaders and members of CWALAC of Texas from across Texas will be in the Capitol lobbying for the passage of these bills. If you can join us, please do so.
CWALAC of Texas