by Birthright: A War Story | Updated on 5.2.18
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On Wednesday, Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts signed into law a new budget that would remove funding for clinics that refer women to or perform abortions:
The $8.8 million budget, which also provided funding for child welfare, is expected to cut off federal Title X funding to Planned Parenthood, according to WOWT. It passed the state's legislature along a 38-6 vote and required health clinics to separate from abortion facilities.
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Ricketts, a pro-life governor, suggested the budget reflected his state's values.
“Nebraska is a pro-life state, so our budget should reflect our values. Any organization can have access to these dollars as long as they don’t provide abortions,” he said.
Planned Parenthood, the nation's largest abortion provider, claimed the new budget would “block care for 8,000” of its patients.
“We will keep fighting for our patients, and we are exploring all options. Our doors will remain open, and we will continue to offer all of our services,” Meg Mikolajczyk, associate general counsel with Planned Parenthood of Heartland, said.
Planned Parenthood pointed to how its health centers provided services to the vast majority of Title X patients in two of the state's major cities.
“Without Planned Parenthood, many of our patients could lose access to health care altogether, because other providers cannot serve all of our patients,” Dawn Laguens, executive vice president at Planned Parenthood Federation of America, said.
But the governor's office said the budget maintained Title X funding, suggesting that other clinics could potentially fill the gap left by Planned Parenthood.
“The budget maintains the existing level of Title X funding, which provides reproductive health care for thousands of Nebraska women and men,” the governor's office said.
Written by Birthright: A War Story
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