May 30, 2018

Trump's abortion gag rule

Maine Beacon - The new rule governing the Title X family planning program—also known as the Gag Rule–put forth in draft form  by the Trump-Pence administration is offensive and dangerous to women’s health. It’s a political attack that threatens to return us to a time when people of means had access to all the care they needed, and low-income folks were forced to go without.

If implemented, the Gag Rule would make it impossible for health care providers like Maine Family Planning to tell our patients about available abortion care if they want it and will also make it harder for women, men, and teens to access affordable birth control, STD testing and treatment, and cancer screenings. It would undermine medical ethics and reproductive rights. And it would certainly harm poor and rural Mainers who depend on MFP’s Title X-funded network for quality health care.

The proposal, which has yet to be officially published in the Federal Register (that will kick off a 60-day comment period), prohibits providers that offer abortions—or even refer for them—from receiving Title X funding. Furthermore, it prohibits activities that “encourage, promote, or advocate for abortion,” and even those that promote “a favorable attitude toward abortion” (emphasis added). In other words, the rule seeks to stigmatize and isolate abortion care despite it being a constitutionally protected service some patients may need.

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