The new Department of Health & Human Services under Donald Trump is pressing to re-orient the “family planning” programs of the Department to bring them more in line with the values of the great majority in America.
Despite the fact that the Republican Congress maintained funding for Title X at Obama levels in this last omnibus travesty, they did put $10 million in new monies to expand the effort to bring “sexual risk avoidance education” (SRA) into public schools. This curriculum is science-based, with several studies demonstrating that it helps kids avoid behaviors which lead to poverty, regret and even tragedy.
Hopefully various key players in the Idaho Legislature will take note of the studies and moral clarity which is giving shape to a new agenda at the federal level. There are a surprising number of Republicans in the Statehouse who buy into the Planned Parenthood doctrine that the key to reducing abortion, teen pregnancy and out-of-wedlock births is more money for birth control. This is the thinking which drove the proposal to provide Planned Parenthood with a windfall of $29 million in new federal and state tax dollars (HB 563).
There was even a proposal by Rep. Van Orden to expand Planned Parenthood’s role in our public school’s sex education curriculum. (HB 579).
While we were able to defeat both pieces of legislation this last session – the truth is, those battles are not over. Various legislators have warned us they will be back.
And then there is the circulating petition to put Medicaid expansion on the ballot this fall. Included in that misguided proposal is a boatload of money for Planned Parenthood.