Ohio's Lawmakers Want Planned Parenthood Funds to Be Given to Food Banks


Although numerous investigations into the heavily-edited videos targeting Planned Parenthood have shown no evidence of wrongdoing, several states have called for the defunding of the women’s health care provider. On Tuesday, the Ohio House voted to remove Planned Parenthood’s Title X funds following this summer’s release of the controversial videos. Ohio senators want the $1.3 million Planned Parenthood gets for health services — such as HIV and STD testing — to instead be given to a specific list of alternative providers. However, many of the places listed, such as dental offices and food banks, do not provide STI testing or other reproductive health services.

One of the locations, the Freestore Foodbank in Cincinnati, told the Guardian it doesn’t actually provide health services and is “just a drug and alcohol treatment center.” Another location only specified dental work as their offered health treatment. So, Ohio lawmakers want the funds to be distributed to places where their state’s female population will adequately receive teeth cleanings, but what about annual exams, STD testing and treatment, contraception and sexual health education?

Even if it is successfully defunded, Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio will still provide services to clients. The group’s CEO, Stephanie Kight says the cut would be a “big blow”, particularly for “the men and women who turn to us every day.” Kight says they would find other ways to pay for services. “Planned Parenthood is deeply committed to giving patients the care they need. We would figure out a way to cover the cost, but everything has its limits.”

Kight’s group sees about 70,000 patients each year at its 28 locations. Only three of the centers provide abortions.

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Image via Getty.

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