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Withdrawal of Health Centers Will Have A Devastating Impact on Black Women

Statement from Black Women’s Health Imperative Executive Office:

WASHINGTON, D.C. (August 22, 2019) — Today, the Black Women’s Health Imperative (BWHI) president and CEO, Linda Goler Blount released the following statement in response to the withdrawal of health care centers from across the country including Planned Parenthood:

“We stand with Planned Parenthood and health clinics across the country in remaining consistent to their mission of protecting reproductive health rights and providing the full continuum of health care services.” 

“Planned Parenthood’s withdrawal from the Title X program could have a devastating impact on communities of color particularly black women who depend upon their life-saving services.  21 percent of the more than four million people who rely on affordable birth control and reproductive health care services provided by Title X clinics are Black.”  

“The implementation of  the domestic gag rule restrictions placed on the Title X program will make it illegal for  providers who participate in the Title X program to refer patients for abortions or to even discuss abortion care.  This rule is another attempt by the Trump- Pence administration to undermine a woman’s fundamental right to choose. Black women and all women deserve access to comprehensive reproductive health care and should have the ability to determine the best options for their care after receiving full and accurate medical information from their providers.”

“Withdrawal of health centers is likely to exacerbate the already growing disparity that exists between black and white maternal and infant mortality rates.  It will jeopardize access to affordable health care and perhaps, even the lives of black women who rely on Title X services for access to birth control, STI tests, HIV/AIDS and cancer screening.”

“As an organization dedicated to the health and well-being of Black women, we cannot ignore this position. Black women already face enormous barriers and challenges when it comes to our health. “

We urge all women to demand the U.S. Senate take action now to protect and expand access to care, reverse this decision, and Protect the Title X program.