New Hampshire Defunds Planned Parenthood, Tells Women: If You Want To Party, ‘Don’t Ask Me To Pay For It’

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"New Hampshire Defunds Planned Parenthood, Tells Women: If You Want To Party, ‘Don’t Ask Me To Pay For It’"

“Planned Parenthood has stopped providing birth control pills and other contraception in New Hampshire after the state’s executive council rejected up to $1.8 million in funding for the group” because it also provides privately-funded abortions. After losing its contract — which paid for education, distributing contraception, and the testing and treatment of sexually transmitted infections — the centers have “turned away 20 to 30 patients a day who have arrived to refill their birth control prescriptions”:

Last year, Planned Parenthood provided contraception for 13,242 patients in New Hampshire, [CEO of Planned Parenthood of Northern New England Steve]Trombley said. The organization also provided 6,112 breast exams, 5,548 screenings for cervical cancer and 18,858 tests for sexually transmitted infections. If the contract is not renewed, Planned Parenthood will drastically reduce its services, Trombley said. The organization employs 80 people in New Hampshire. [...]

Stephanie Hiltunen, a 26-year-old who lives in Hanover, said she picked up a monthlong supply of birth control last Thursday, the day before the center stopped dispensing it. But future refills will require an inconvenient trip to Enfield, she said. Hiltunen said she would like to have a child but cannot afford it, and she worries there will be a public cost if contraception is inaccessible to low-income women.

“If they can’t afford to have a baby, then we’ll be paying for them in the long run,” she said.

Some women have told the center that the will likely “stop taking birth control because they cannot afford the higher prices charged by pharmacies” and an estimated 70 percent don’t have insurance to cover the prescriptions.

New Hampshire’s Council rejected the contract in a 3-2 vote, arguing that taxpayers should not fund abortions or so-called irresponsible behavior. “I am opposed to abortion,” said Raymond Wieczorek, a council member who voted against the contract. “I am opposed to providing condoms to someone. If you want to have a party, have a party, but don’t ask me to pay for it.”

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