2011 News Archive

HHS decision is the right one

Katie Woodruff Jefferson City – News-Leader.com

House Republicans are attacking a recent decision by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to require new insurance plans to cover birth control with no co-pays.

Currently, there is an exemption to the preventive care provision that doesn’t require churches to provide birth control coverage. However, House Republicans and Catholic bishops are pushing to expand the exemption to any organization that is remotely religiously affiliated, particularly Catholic hospitals and universities, even though these organizations employ and serve individuals of different faiths and backgrounds. Expanding this exemption would mean millions of workers and their families would lose access to affordable birth control, and so would students at some faith-based universities.

I am a student at Missouri State. Many of my friends use some form of birth control to prevent pregnancy and to have control of their own bodies and lives. Many don’t have much of an income, let alone enough money to have and raise a baby at this point in their lives.

The House Republicans are wrong on this issue. Instead of focusing on jobs and the economy, they are spending their time trying to take affordable birth control away from women.

It comes down to this: The HHS decision will have a real and positive impact on millions of people struggling to make ends meet. All students and employees should be able to benefit from the new health care reform law — even students and employees at religious institutions and hospitals.

Playing Politics With Women’s Lives

Editorial – The New York Times – Published: October 19, 2011

House Republicans approved an egregious measure last week that would shrink access to abortion to the point of endangering women’s lives.

Growing set of state abortion restrictions visualized

Map & Data Resources | By Althea Webber, Margaret Moslander | Reproductive health services

Sept. 14, 2011 — With these data visualizations, Remapping Debate identifies all of the many restrictions on abortion that have been legislated in various states. Various pro-choice advocates contacted by Remapping Debate focused on “targeted regulation of abortion providers,” or “TRAP” laws, as the restrictions with significant impact, although they were unable to provide specific studies on the extent of the impact.

Birth Control You Can Afford — It’s About Time!

Cecile Richards President, Planned Parenthood Action Fund – Huffpost Women

A young woman named Gabby — a fellow Texan — wrote to me from her home in Austin to tell me that she recently had to choose between paying for her birth control and getting her car repaired. Actually, for Gabby, there was no choice at all. Without the car, she can’t make a living. So she did what she had to do. She skipped her shot of Depo — a long-acting contraceptive — paid the mechanic, and took her chances.

That’s a gamble no woman should have to take.

Jay Nixon allows new abortion restrictions to become law

Jason Hancock – The St. Louis Post-Dispatch

For the second year in a row, legislation restricting abortions in Missouri will become law without Gov. Jay Nixon’s signature.

The governor announced Thursday that he would allow the constitutional deadline for signing or vetoing bills to expire, meaning that a pair of identical bills restricting abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy will go into effect Aug. 28.

Editorial: Lawmakers should focus on unintended pregnancies

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch Editorial Board – May 31, 2011

As Gov. Jay Nixon ponders whether to veto two anti-abortion bills on his desk that could have an effect on about 60 women a year facing heart-breaking circumstances, he should ask himself the $11 billion question:

Why is Missouri still passing laws intended to create legal obstacles to a few abortions instead of doing something to reduce unintended pregnancies and save real lives?

Cartoon was ridiculous

Mark Staudte – Springfield

I did not know whether to laugh or cry at the ridiculous cartoon in the April 27 paper that attacked Planned Parenthood. Only 3 percent of their services include abortion. They also do breast cancer and cervical cancer screening as well as STD screening and many other beneficial services.

Mo. lawmakers pass further restrictions on late-term abortions with new penalties for doctors

DAVID A. LIEB – Associated Press

Although already rare in Missouri, women seeking late-term abortions would face even more restrictions under legislation given final approval Thursday by state lawmakers who have been attempting for decades to gradually make it more difficult for abortions to occur.

Planned Parenthood student group expands

Jaime Farquhar – The Drury Mirror

With the promise of summer looming anxiously in the air, Summit Park’s Panthers for Planned Parenthood house finds a unique opportunity hidden in the transition. The group will pass on its role as Drury’s sexual awareness advocacy group to Voices for Planned Parenthood (VOX), organized by Jenn Kearbey.

Trust black women

Jamala Rogers – The St. Louis American

A couple of weeks, a billboard on Cass Avenue near Jefferson Avenue caught the eye of some conscious women. A precious little brown face with big almond eyes is looking out at you. Since we tend to read from left to right, the image grabs us first. Your eyes then move to the text – and the real point of the billboard. It reads: “The most dangerous place for an African American is in the womb.”

The “Black Genocide” billboard campaign is the insidious work of a racist, right-wing coalition created and financed by the likes of the Radiance Foundation, Heroic Media and LifeAlways. They are also part of the same despicable forces who attack President Obama as being a Muslim and non-citizen. Yet they also have a billboard with an image of the president claiming, “Every 21 minutes, our next possible leader is aborted.”

Family planning – Trying to prohibit abortion

Henry J. Waters III – Columbia Daily Tribune

A number of state legislatures, including Missouri’s, are doing all they can to destroy the activities of Planned Parenthood in the name of “protecting” women from abortion.

Kansas passed a law even more restrictive than the one concocted in the Missouri General Assembly this year, and Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels, a darling of the cultural right sought after to enter the Republican presidential derby, signed a bill defunding Planned Parenthood because the agency provides abortion services. He contends family planning services provided by the agency can be obtained elsewhere.

Through years of political assault, Planned Parenthood has gone to extraordinary lengths to separate funding streams and facilities for abortion from its other family planning services, which constitute a large majority of the agency’s work. Planned Parenthood is the largest private not-for-profit provider of family planning services.

Five myths about Planned Parenthood

Clare Coleman – The Washington Post

I was a Planned Parenthood affiliate chief executive, supervising a network of clinics in Upstate New York, during the early days of this terrible recession. We ran deficits, cut hours, closed centers and laid off staff members. In a recession, things get very difficult — more and more people are in need, while government funds lag and donations dwindle. But still we did not turn patients away, even if they could not pay. At the same time, we had to fight political battles to preserve women’s rights to basic care and information about their sexual health. Those battles continue: Thursday, the House voted to defund Planned Parenthood permanently; the Senate opposed that measure. Amid the debate, let’s address some of the misperceptions about this nearly 100-year-old health-care organization.

Printed in Rolla Daily News Sunday February 27, 2011

Dear Editor, The House of Representatives has launched the most devastating assault on women’s health care in American history. They want to eliminate the national family program, Title X, which has provided millions of low-income women with preventive care, including Pap tests and birth control, since 1970.  In addition, they want to stop all federal funds from supporting lifesaving, preventive care through Planned Parenthood’s more than 800 health centers across the country.

Simply put, these legislative attacks will cut off access to preventive health care for millions of women who need it the most.

If this is about deficit reduction then we should continue to fund the program that saves taxpayers $4 for every $1 they invest. If this is about abortion, then we should continue to fund the program and the health care providers that offer the services, supplies and information to prevent unwanted pregnancy. (Title X does not fund any abortion services.)

Maintaining and increasing access to preventive health care make good sense. These extreme proposals to eliminate access to preventive health care do not. We urge Congress to stop this ideological assault on the health and well-being of American women and families, and to get back in touch with reality.

Tonia Stubblefield, President/CEO

Tri-Rivers Planned Parenthood, Inc.


Planned Parenthood MO Takes On Proposed Funding Cuts

Heather Claybrook – Public News Service – MO

Paula Gianino, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region, predicts the proposed cuts would have a profound impact on the women who rely on the organization for annual gynecological exams, cancer screenings, low-cost birth control and education.

“This is banning Planned Parenthood from participating in these federal health care programs that are 100-percent prevention-based, that help women and men and teens be healthy.”

Planning protection

Planned Parenthood services are important to many

Tyra Pierce – The Drury Mirror

Planned Parenthood. It sounds like a good idea, but in the United States the phrase appears to be an oxymoron rather than the norm with approximately half of pregnancies being unplanned according to The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy’s May 2008 article.

Man offers a view of Planned Parenthood: a force for life

MARY SANCHEZ – The Kansas City Star

This column comes with a warning:

Men may cringe for their private parts; women may applaud a new ally.

Clinic provides valuable health care

J.J. Kearbey – Springfield

I find it appalling, but not surprising, that our Congressman Billy Long has taken it upon himself to sign a bill that would not only defund Planned Parenthood, but also several community organizations as well. By fighting against women’s choices in health, he is also fighting citizens’ choices in health as well.

Missouri bill would monitor how Planned Parenthood spends federal funds

Jessica Pupovac – the Missourian

According to Missouri Family Health Council data from the past year, the Planned Parenthood clinic in Columbia used Title X funds to conduct 1,433 pap smears, 1,500 breast exams, 4,515 tests for sexually transmitted diseases and 385 HIV tests. It also provided 2,609 patients with free or discounted contraceptives.

Planned Parenthood faces deep cuts, says Congress is attacking women (AUDIO / VIDEO)

Jessica Machetta – Missourinet

Women’s health advocates are calling on Congress to maintain funding for Planned Parenthood. They say the federal measure to strip funding is an attack on women.

Editorial: Planned Parenthood offers many important services

The Standard Editorial Board – Issue date: 2/22/11

While you were probably sleeping Saturday, the House of Representatives approved more than $60 million in spending cuts. The bill proposes cuts to education, foreign aid, military projects and more.

One program facing particularly damaging cuts is Planned Parenthood. The bill proposes to completely cut government funding to Planned Parenthood.

Area family planning programs face loss of federal funding under House bill

Melissa Miller – Southeast Missourian

Health care services for low-income women, including more than 800 in Cape Girardeau, could be eliminated under a continuing budget resolution the U.S. Senate will consider next week.

Abortion bills betray right wing

TINA DUPUY – The Columbia Daily Tribune

The 112th Congress, at least the House, has used its fiscally conservative “mandate” to stick it to the marginalized. How focused are they on jobs? They’ve introduced a total of 18 bills so far, according to a simple Library of Congress search, dealing with abortion.

Gianino: Leadership out of touch with women’s reality

Paula Gianino, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri – Springfield News-Leader

Today, too many women and families cannot afford the basic health care they need. Nearly one out of every six Missourians is without health insurance.

Jobs and the struggling economy were to be the priorities of those elected in 2010; however, many are now pushing a dangerous agenda to dismantle our nation’s family planning program and to take health care away from millions of women in America.

Abortion issue also tied to birth control

John Higdon – Columbia Daily Tribune

Editor, the Tribune: Our Ninth Amendment reads, “The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.” One right described by the U.S. Supreme Court is the right to privacy as described in Griswold v. Connecticut (1965), which defined Americans’ right to use contraception. This right to privacy implied by the Ninth Amendment was used again in the Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton decisions by the court in 1973.

Missouri House committee considers stricter abortion laws

BY Jamie Hausman – The Missourian

JEFFERSON CITY — Missouri’s law banning the abortion of a viable fetus would be expanded under a measure presented Wednesday to the House Health Care Policy Committee.

TODAY’S QUESTION: Should Missouri’s late-term abortion law be redefined?

BY Anne Christnovich – The Missourian

Currently, Missouri’s abortion law allows the abortion of a viable fetus only to preserve the life or health of the mother. A measure proposed Wednesday to the House Health Care Policy Committee, however, would further clarify the wording in the law.

Abortion gets another hearing in Jefferson City

By Jo Mannies, Beacon political reporter

During last fall’s elections in Missouri and elsewhere, jobs, health care and government spending were the hot topics — not abortion.

But one wouldn’t guess it by the latest activities in Jefferson City and Washington, where abortion — long a cultural flashpoint — has again emerged as a key issue.


Congress.org / Women’s Issue / Abortion

To: Sen. Roy Blunt

February 6, 2011

Senator Blunt,
All Missourians can agree that we need to reduce the number of abortions. We are at odds as to how to accomplish this. I am here to inform you that banning abortion will do NOTHING to reduce abortions from occurring.

Letters to the Editor – St. Louis Post-Dispatch

“No other choice” Maureen Jordan – Manchester

Regarding Colleen Carroll Campbell’s column “Legal, but not safe or rare” (Jan. 27), about the alleged horror of Philadelphia abortionist Dr. Kermit Gosnell: Because Dr. Gosnell allegedly was able to practice abortion and infanticide unchecked, Ms. Campbell concludes that this proves that Roe v. Wade does not ensure that women have access to abortion that is ‘safe, legal and rare.”

Ms. Campbell’s conclusions are dead wrong.

“It has nothing to do with abortion” Carl Gudiswitz – Grantwood

Colleen Carroll Campbell’s column “Legal, but not safe or rare” (Jan. 27) wasn’t about abortion; it was just an excuse for a grisly description of a person performing cruel, illegal, despicable acts on humans that would not be allowed or tolerated on animals.

Letters to the Editor – St. Louis Post-Dispatch

“Going back decades” Cindy Betz – St. Louis

A far-reaching, anti-abortion bill that was introduced by U.S. Rep. Chris Smith in the U.S. House of Representatives and is supported by 173 members of the House, would redefine rape and set women’s rights back by decades.

Gianino: Opponents of abortion misinforming the public

Paula Gianino, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri

Counterpoint: This year is the 38th anniversary of the historic Roe v. Wade decision, which recognized a woman’s constitutional right of privacy when making reproductive decisions. On this anniversary, Planned Parenthood believes our community deserves more civil and factual dialogue about abortion and reproductive health.

Click here to read the entire article!

Don’t deny coverage for legal procedure

Crystal Brigman – Springfield

For nearly 95 years Planned Parenthood has been a leading provider of medically accurate information and life-saving preventive services like breast and cervical cancer screenings, family planning and treatment for sexually transmitted infections.

Click here to read the entire article!

Claim that Most Abortion Clinics Are Located in Black Neighborhoods Is False

Advisory – Guttmacher Institute

Fewer than one in 10 abortion clinics are located in predominantly African-American

neighborhoods, or those in which the majority of residents are black.

Click here to read the entire report!


News Release – Guttmacher Institute

By providing millions of young and low-income women access to voluntary contraceptive services, the national family planning program prevents 1.94 million unintended pregnancies, including almost 400,000 teen pregnancies, each year. These pregnancies would result in 860,000 unintended births, 810,000 abortions and 270,000 miscarriages, according to a new Guttmacher Institute report.

Click here to read the entire report!

Single, Female, Mormon, Alone

By NICOLE HARDY – The New York Times

OF all the places I felt sure I’d never go, Planned Parenthood topped the list. Because, you know, they perform abortions and give condoms to kids, or so I’d been warned. Yet one spring afternoon found me in its waiting room next to a teenage girl, who was clearly perplexed by the intake form and likely bound for an uncomfortable, humiliating four minutes in the back of a borrowed Chevy Chevelle.

Click here to read the entire article!


Emergency Contraception: An Issue Before The Missouri Legislature?

Heather Claybrook, Public News Service – MO

December 29, 2010

ST. LOUIS, Mo. – Missouri lawmakers start a new session on Thursday, Jan. 6, and one of the issues expected to soon be up for discussion is emergency contraception, such as the controversial ‘ella,’ a pill that just became available this month in the United States.

Click here to read the entire article!

The Man Who Loved Women Too Much

Sarah Blustain, MotherJones

Meet the lawyer who’s crusading to advance women’s rights—by restricting access to abortion.

Click here to read the entire article!