Planned Parenthood clinics across the state of Ohio have been receiving notifications from the Ohio Department of Health informing them that their state funding will soon come to an end. The notice comes following a federal appeals court ruling earlier this month that insisted there was nothing unconstitutional about a 2016 state law that bans the state from allocating preventive health dollars to any organization that “performs or promotes” non-therapeutic abortion.
A non-therapeutic abortion is defined as a termination that is not medically necessary — i.e., what many would term, “abortion for convenience.”
The letters stated that the funding would cease as of April 20. According to Cleveland.com, last year ODH granted some $600,000 to Planned Parenthood clinics for services including the STD (sexually transmitted disease) Control program and the Minority HIV/AIDS initiative.
Planned Parenthood executives reacted with fury. “Ohio continues to put politics over people, putting them at greater risk. This isn’t about politics, this is about lifesaving health care,” said Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio CEO Iris Harvey according to Planned Parenthood Advocates of Ohio.
Gov DeWine is HEARTLESS. Just got a 30 day notice from Health Dept. Defunding Planned Parenthood work to reduce Black infant mortality, prevent violence against women, provide cancer screenings, HIV tests and sex education! All care health depts couldn’t do!
— IRIS E. Harvey (@CeoGreaterOhio) March 21, 2019
Of the 26 locations across the state, three provide abortions. However, under the Hyde Amendment, these clinics were not permitted to receive state funding, even before the 2016 measure was passed — they are funded by Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio and Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio Region.
Legitimate Health Care Services Dropping Off
However, those on the pro-life side who are in favor of the de-funding, have pointed out that the non-abortion services provided by Ohio’s Planned Parenthood clinics have declined in recent years, while abortion rates continue to increase.
“As abortions nationally continue to drop, Planned Parenthood’s abortion numbers have increased year over year,” noted pro-life outlet, LiveAction. “It currently holds 35% of the national market share for abortions (it committed more than 330,000, according to the most recent annual report).”
In addition, Planned Parenthood has been caught up in a number of scandals, including fetal organ harvesting and even failing to report the abortions of underage girls who were brought into clinics under suspicious circumstances.
“After being initially blocked by a court ruling, Ohio has finally defunded PP of all state taxpayer money. Great news!” tweeted LiveAction’s founder, Lila Rose.
In 2017, President Trump signed a bill which allowed states to immediately begin defunding abortion organizations like Planned Parenthood by removing the family planning funding they were permitted to receive under Title X.