When asked to consider writing a piece that supported Planned Parenthood, I felt obligated to take this political stance. It's a shame that something like Planned Parenthood is political, but since it is, it's important to be knowledgeable about what they do. With all the attention on Planned Parenthood over the last couple of years, I thought it was important to learn more about what services they offer. To be fair, I had been affected by the perception that PP focuses almost exclusively on abortions. But, what I learned is that Planned Parenthood serves the public in several truly meaningful ways.
1 - Saying no to Planned Parenthood is also saying no to cancer prevention. Cancer affects millions of Americans every year. Any prevention could be life altering. PP offers breast and testicular cancer screenings which are essential. "There are many different types of cancer, including cancers that affect your breasts and genitals. Cancer can often be cured if you find it early and get treatment — that’s why it’s so important to get regular checkups and cancer screenings.”
2 - Planned Parenthood also provides support for the LGBTQ community. On the PP website, you can find an Info and Resources for LGBTQ Teens and Allies page. Just on the website alone there is support for someone who might be uncovering their sexual orientation or want to support LGBTQ friends and family. There are several resources and websites available on that page.
3 - Help with Pregnancy. “Maybe you want the facts on how pregnancy happens. Or maybe you’re pregnant and want to know more about your options. Or maybe you want to know how to have a healthy pregnancy. You’ve come to the right place.” Many people don’t realize that one of the primary focal points of PP is supporting women trying to become pregnant or who are hoping for a healthy pregnancy.
4 - General health and wellness. “You can’t take good care of yourself if you don’t take care of your sexual and reproductive health. This means getting to know your body and getting regular check-ups, as well as addressing any other issues that might pop up.” That says it all. Taking care of one's health is a no-brainer.
Recently, the House took steps toward repealing the Affordable Care Act and establishing an alternative healthcare plan, the AHCA. Planned Parenthood will lose considerable funding if this plan makes it way through the Senate. In addition, to the four benefits I already discussed, this repeal would have some serious ramifications.
It would block low-income patients from receiving health care at Planned Parenthood centers. Each year, about 2.5 million women, men, and young people utilize Planned Parenthood for basic and important health care services, including the aforementioned lifesaving cancer screenings. Many people will have nowhere to turn to for care if Planned Parenthood has to close their centers.
It would discriminate against women. From emergency services to hospitalizations to rehabilitative services, women more often utilize these critical health benefits. Repealing the ACA could have a majorly harmful impact on millions of women.
It would also kick millions of women and men off their insurance. Just last week, the Congressional Budget Office reported that CBO 23 million Americans would lose coverage over the next decade. 23. Million. Americans.
So, I must support Planned Parenthood because they do a great deal of good. They have benefitted my family, friends, and even former students in a positive way. So, I value their work. This means I cannot support the AHCA and hope you will join me in urging Congress to reconsider and think about the tens of millions who are on the verge of losing essential, life-changing healthcare and services. #StandWithPP
*Although this post is made possible by support from The Mission List , the opinions expressed are my own.