I’ve accumulated a lot of political posts knowledge the last 18 months reading 1000s of news articles and watching 1000s of hours of TV news, attending political events and everything else in between. While I’ve dedicated myself to getting woke that I decided I would like to start sharing everything I’ve learned with people in my new GET WOKE 👀SERIES. My intention is to help awaken those, (who were once like me- uninterested, uninformed and apathetic and a political newbie) who are curious in an easy way, with quick and concise-ish info. My hope is that I can educate on the most important topics and inspire you to GET WOKE and GET INVOLVED! 💗
I bet most of you have not heard the words GAG RULE and Title X. It’s essential that we get the word out on these topics and how they could affect women’s reproductive health starting October 1, 2018. It is essential and crucial now more then ever with the nomination of ultra Conservative Brett Kavanaugh for Supreme Court Justice and with Roe v Wade in danger of being overturned. I’m imploring you to give me a few minutes of your time to get educated and to spread the word and take 1 easy 30 second action! I’m going to give you the brief rundown on The Gag Rule and Title X followed by further reading material if you want. You can also skip to the bottom to “the list of actions you can take right now to help spread our message and show our strength. Check them out, and commit to doing at least ONE thing today to resist the Trump-Pence attack on our care. Bonus points for doing more! But the only ask of this blog post is to do ACTION #1 which is to submit a comment to HHS secretary telling them NO GAG RULE. Not now. Not ever (which takes about 30 seconds but will go A LONG WAY)”
In 5 days, the hush hush deadline from the Health and Human Services on July 31 will end to submit comments and criticism against the Gag Rule that will affect women across America. What is the GAG RULE? What is Title X? Why is this important and how will it affect women? What can you do? Keep reading…
With just days left to formally push back on this policy, we need you to join with hundreds of thousands of people making our voices heard today #NoGagRule
Quick aside. This topic may seem irrelevant in your life, perhaps you are done having kids, perhaps you know you may never need PPH services, perhaps you may think you or a family member you know may never need an abortion…the list goes on. I just wanted to quickly share why this topic is very near and dear to me, I will write more about it another day. In 2014, I was thrilled to be pregnant with my 4th child. After a horrible diagnosis after my 12 week blood work came back and confirmed by an amnio and sonogram around the 17 week mark I found out my baby had trisomy 9 with multiple fetal abnormalities that were most likely incompatible to life and would be devastating to my family and brutal to my unborn child. After a heartbreaking and devastating and life changing decision I decided to terminate my pregnancy. It’s called a termination for medical reasons, but it’s a form of an abortion. I never EVER thought I would need to have one. I was married, and I wanted more kids why would I? Thankfully I lived in NY and had private health insurance and was within the 24 week mark, but many MANY women are not this “lucky”. Thus life changing experience opened my eyes to a whole word out there and it became my mission to open peoples minds on this topic. You NEVER know where life will take you, or affect the ones you love. So I fight for women across the country to be able to have the option of continuing their pregnancies or having the options of ending them for many reasons, this is a personal choice between them, their families and their doctors and is really unconscionable to think that a stranger should ever have a say in such a personal matter. But I will explore this topic another time in another GET WOKE 👀 Series blog post.
Planned Parenthood who is the leading defender of women’s rights (and is one of the nation’s leading providers of high-quality, affordable health care, and the nation’s largest provider of sex education) and are working tirelessly and endlessly to protect the rights our Mothers and Grandmothers fought for us. It is essential that we now fight to keep these rights for ourselves and for our daughters and granddaughters. These are critically dangerous times for women…we’ve made so much progress and I can’t imagine that in the year 2018 we are in danger of turning back the clocks to the 1970s a time where women could not access legal and safe abortions. And let’s be honest we are fighting on behalf of sons and fathers who’s lives are also affected by the women in their lives. While you may not use the services of Planned Parenthood you have to understand that they are fighting on behalf of all of us. You must use your privilege and the ability to fight for women across the country who don’t have your voice, who live in places that don’t have access to medical facilities (in some rural places PPH are the only women’s health care providers, who don’t have the financial stability and ability to pay for private expensive health care, and for the young people who may find themselves on the footsteps of PPH needing their assistance. A cancer diagnosis, a flagged breast exam, access to birth control and contraception services, an unwanted/untimed/unhealthy pregnancy, etc also can have affects on ALL family members that means MEN TOO! So this is a fight for all humankind. And we need all hands on deck. So let’s GET WOKE 👀
What is the Gag Rule?
In short, a gag rule would keep women from having full information about ALL of their options, and from getting the best health care possible.
“President Trump is pushing a “gag rule.” This rule is designed to block people from getting accurate information about their health care, and would prevent doctors from giving patients the vital reproductive health care they need. This would prevent patients from getting birth control and preventive care at Planned Parenthood health centers. At the same time, it would also allow doctors and nurses across the country to withhold information from their patients.”- Planned Parenthood
In spring 2018, Trump proposed a nationwide “gag” rule — a dangerous measure designed to block access to health care for millions of people. The gag rule would make it illegal for doctors, nurses, hospitals, community health centers, and any other provider in the Title X (explanation below) program to tell patients how they can safely and legally access abortion.
In doing so, the rule removes the guarantee that patients get full and accurate information about their health care from their doctor. If that’s not enough, another effect of the gag rule could be that millions of people will not get the health care they need — birth control, cancer screenings, STD testing and treatment, or even basic wellness exams. (That is because Planned Parenthood would lose their Title X Grant money. Why? Because they will never stop offering abortion services and thus they would not qualify for the funding…)
For nearly two decades, Title X law has been clear: Health care providers cannot withhold information from you about your pregnancy options. The administration’s gag rule means they CAN.
The gag rule comes on the heels on other dangerous attacks on Title X. Earlier in 2018, the Trump-Pence administration began trying to completely remake the Title X program by removing its focus on providing birth control and reproductive health care. The administration wants to push people toward abstinence programs or fertility awareness methods (like the “rhythm method” or “calendar method”) instead of more effective forms of birth control like the pill, the birth control shot, or IUDs.
These attacks on Title X could have devastating consequences and threaten health care for millions. That’s why Planned Parenthood took the Trump-Pence administration to court to fight for the four million people who depend on Title X, and we’re doing everything we can to stop the gag rule from going into effect.
Planned Parenthood is going to fight for our patients’ health and rights — and for the millions of people in this country who need to access quality reproductive health care.
I am including some visual slides about the Gag Rule that are helpful! 🖼🖼🖼
Summary– Basically the gag rule will NOT let Title X Providers like PPH suggest abortion as an option if a women is considering one. (If they don’t follow these rules they lose funding, if they lose funding 4 million women could have jeopardized access to healthcare services. 41% of Title X Women use PPH. ) If a women comes up with the abortion idea on their own, only then can PPH provide a list of abortion providers, but the list will be complicated and the women have to call one by one weeding out and trying to find a place that suits their needs creating a huge hurdle in a desperate time of need. Also hidden in the list can be abortion crisis centers which pretend they are Pro Choice centers but are really Pro Life centers that gilt women and give them false information (the Supreme Court just ruled in favor of these centers last month). It’s sick. They will make providers like PPH build new centers if they want to provide abortions which is cost prohibited realistically.
What is Title X?
Title X is the only federal grant program dedicated solely to providing individuals with comprehensive family planning and related preventive health services. “More than four million people rely on federal Title X funding to access contraception and other essential health care.
Established in 1970, Title X provides affordable birth control and reproductive health care to people with low incomes, who couldn’t otherwise afford health care services on their own.
Federal Title X funding helps ensure that every person — regardless of where they live, how much money they make, their background, or whether or not they have health insurance — has access to basic, preventive reproductive health care.”
If you want to do deeper and truly understand the importance of Title X you can read below: ⬇️
What Health Care Services Does Title X Provide?
More than four million people rely on affordable birth control and reproductive health care services that are funded by Title X. Many of these people don’t even know Title X exists, but without it they wouldn’t be able to access this essential care. The basic primary and preventive health care services provided by Title X include:
• Wellness exams
• Lifesaving cervical and breast cancer screenings
• Birth control
• Contraception education
• Testing and treatment for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and HIV testing
Title X and Planned Parenthood
People rely on Title X in every state at nearly 4,000 Title X-funded health centers across the country. Planned Parenthood plays a crucial role in providing this care: While Planned Parenthood health centers make up just 13 percent of Title X centers, they serve 41 percent of all Title X patients.
That means that in many cases, preventing patients from getting care at Planned Parenthood will mean people go without care.
The Impact of Title X
Title X offers preventive health care to those who are most in need, and it has significant results.
• The affordable birth control that Title X provides helps prevent one million unintended pregnancies each year. Overall, publicly funded birth control services — including Title X — help women avoid 1.9 million unintended pregnancies, including 440,000 teen pregnancies, every year.
• By giving women more control over if and when they have children, Title X allows women to have more control over their lives, including their health, careers, and economic security.
• Title X has undoubtedly saved women’s lives with early detection of cancer through its affordable Pap tests and breast exams.
• Title X helps people screen for STDs and HIV and avert a host of other health issues.
Title X also saves taxpayers money. For every dollar invested in publicly funded family planning programs like Title X, the government saves $7.09 in Medicaid-related costs. In 2010, state and federal governments saved $13.6 billion from publicly funded family planning programs, including $7 billion from Title X-funded health centers alone.
1. Who Benefits from Title X Health Care Funding
Title X-funded services mostly serve people with low incomes, who couldn’t otherwise afford health care on their own. In fact, 78 percent of Title X patients have incomes below 150 percent of the federal poverty level.
The Title X program fights health care inequity by serving populations that have historically faced significant barriers to care, including people of color. About 21 percent of Title X patients identify as Black or African American and 32 percent identify as Hispanic or Latino.
Title X also helps people who are uninsured. Although the Affordable Care Act helped more people get insured than ever before, some people with low and middle incomes remain uninsured and have a greater need for publicly funded birth control and reproductive health care services.
More reading material here
SO NOW WHAT THE HELL DO WE DO ABOUT THIS??? 😡🤯😩
***MOST IMPORTANT ACTION IS THIS ONE ⬇️*** Deadline is July 31, 2018. Planned Parenthood is collecting all of the comments and sending them directly to HHS. There is power in numbers and they are using this as a strategy. ACTION #1
RECRUIT: ACTION #2
Get five friends to join you: Share this action or my post on Facebook to get your friends to add their names too so we can make our rejection of Trump’s gag rule loud and clear. Please use the same link as above in action 1.
TWEET at HHS: ACTION #3
Tell Alex Azar No gag rule, not now, not ever.
-you can copy and paste this paragraph or customize your own
“Hey @HHSGov & @SecAzar: Trump’s gag rule blocks people from getting accurate information about their health care. #NoGagRule: Not now, not ever.”
DONATE TO PPH: ACTION #4
– Help fight continued attacks on basic health care and reproductive rights with an urgent gift to the Planned Parenthood Action Fund now. If you don’t have the time or desire to out there fighting yourself at least help PPH do it on behalf of yourself and other women. This requires immense financial resources!
Volunteer: ACTION #5
Consider getting involved with Planned Parenthood. There are several ways to get involved that require varying levels of commitment! It may feel daunting and you may feel out of your element volunteering for something new. Contact me, I can be your friend. You can come with me! You will feel so good about yourself when you are doing the right thing and fighting on behalf of those who can’t. Try it.
Write a Letter to the Editor (LTE: ACTION #6
Write a letter to the editor of your local paper expressing your opposition to the gag rule to raise awareness in your community.
Share Your Story: ACTION #7
Show politicians how vital planned parenthood is in your community and share your story about why you stand with Planned Parenthood
In closing, I wanted to remind you that “Trump isn’t waiting for his new Supreme Court justice to help him block people from getting health care and take away our basic rights. His gag rule is a direct attack that will affect millions of patients if it becomes law. Your actions today can turn the tide in stopping it.”
I’m also providing the form letter that Planned Parenthood uses to contact HHS Secretary Alex Azar it gives a good summary of what we are fighting for and you can use it to share with other people because it’s concise and informative!
“Dear HHS Secretary Alex Azar,
Subject: GAG RULE
I’m writing about President Trump’s announcement of a “gag rule” on health care providers that participate in Title X, the nation’s program for affordable birth control and reproductive health care that four million people rely on each year.
If enacted, the “gag rule” would prohibit ANY Title X health care provider from referring patients for abortion — even if that’s what the patient wants, and even if withholding that information threatens their health. It would destroy the trust between patients and doctors. And it would put the health care of the four million people who depend on Title X at risk.
The gag rule is also designed to make it impossible for reproductive health care providers like Planned Parenthood to serve patients in the program. This could block the 41 percent of Title X patients who rely on Planned Parenthood health centers from care, leaving them without access to life-saving services like cancer screenings, birth control, wellness exams, and more. We know that the gag rule is intended to block people from accessing care and honest information. This would be radical, and has never been implemented in the United States before.”
THANK YOU FOR READING THIS FAR AND STAY TUNED FOR ANOTHER GET WOKE 👀 SERIES blog post! 😍.