Power To Decide Applauds Bill That Will Fund Key Family Planning Programs
(Washington, D.C.) — Yesterday, Congressional leaders released an omnibus spending bill that will fund government programs for the remainder of FY 2018. A vote on the bill is expected to take place before current funding runs out on Friday, March 23. The bill maintains current funding levels for the evidence-based Teen Pregnancy Prevention (TPP) Program and the Title X Family Planning Program. The bill also increases funding for Sexual Risk Avoidance Education (otherwise known as abstinence-only until marriage) from $15 million in FY 2017 to $25 million for FY 2018.
“We are thankful that Congress will keep the evidence-based TPP Program funded at its current levels,” said Ginny Ehrlich, CEO, Power to Decide. “However, we are disappointed that earlier Senate language with bipartisan support, which underscored the importance of the program’s past implementation was left out of the final bill.”
“Similarly, we are also pleased that Congress will maintain existing funding levels and language for the Title X program. However, we are concerned that the bill fails to include previous bipartisan Senate language, which made crystal clear the important role that Title X has historically played in providing high quality clinical contraceptive services.”
Under the current Administration, there have been numerous proposals to dismantle or eliminate these programs. These efforts have included arbitrarily cutting short all 84 current TPP Program grantees, and a recent funding opportunity announcement for the Title X program that lacked any mention of contraception.
“The TPP Program and Title X play a critical role in helping to ensure that every young person has the information, access, and opportunity to decide if, when, and under what circumstances to become pregnant,” continued Ehrlich. “The omnibus has set clear parameters regarding the distribution of the funding. Now, we urge the Administration to honor the intent of these programs.”