The Abortion Fight is About to Move to the White House

photo from google images

photo from google images

Jocelyn Reeder, Editor-In-Chief

As Democrats prepare to take over the U.S. House of Representatives, abortion foes are moving their efforts to the Trump Administration. Anti-abortion activists are targeting the Title X program, which provides federal funding for family planning services for low-income people.

More than 4 million people participate in the Title X program each year. The services Title X provides is STD testing, cancer screenings, and birth control.  Title X receives $286.5 million and none of that can be used to pay for providing abortions. The White House can make changes to the rules to push through changes to Title X which would make it harder for clinics that provide abortions to operate. Examples would be they create physically separate spaces for abortions, and limiting doctors’ freedom to refer patients to providers that offer abortions.

Students for Life president, Kristan Hawkins met with White House administrators last week to discuss post-midterms strategy. A suggestion that she told the administrators was that the Department of Health and Human Services stop funding fetal tissue research and that Planned Parenthood no longer be eligible for federal sex ed grants.

The Trump administration is already exploring the possibility of halting more than $100 million worth of research projects that involve fetal tissue. Trump administration’s changes could lead known clinics like Planned Parenthood out of business.

Eight of the 30 family planning clinics operated through Indiana’s Title X grant would close if the Trump administration’s proposed changes go into effect, estimated Kristin Adams, who heads the Indiana Family Health Council. Her organization received $5 million from Title X. “Those dollars make up about 80 percent of the council’s funding,” reported Adams.

Adams is not so sure if patients will suffer due to the changes the Trump Administration make. “It could be unintended pregnancies. It could be people choosing not to go. It could be STD’s not being treated in a timely manner because you don’t know where to go,” she said. “Just the start-up of getting a new clinic up and running doesn’t happen overnight, so there may be months of disrupted service. We have a lot of new patients, but we also have a lot of people who have used Title X services from when they were teenagers and now they’re middle-aged adults,” Adams said.