The National Campaign Voices its Extreme Concern about the Impact of the President’s Budget Request: Cutting Programs that Empower People to Decide If, When, and Under What Circumstances to Become Pregnant Will Have Profound Impact on Young People and Families

May 24 2017

(Washington, DC)—On the release of the President’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 budget, The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy voices its opposition to the proposed deep cuts to programs that help reduce unplanned pregnancy among young people. If enacted, these draconian federal budget cuts would damage or eliminate programs that provide evidence-based education to youth at high risk for teen pregnancy, restrict access to high quality contraceptive providers, and make health insurance coverage inaccessible for millions of low-income Americans.

Specifically, President Trump’s budget proposes to:

  • Eliminate the evidence-based Teen Pregnancy Prevention (TPP) Program, currently funded at $101 million.
  • Provide $10 million for “Sexual Risk Avoidance” education (otherwise known as abstinence education), $5 million below the current funding level.
  • Maintain the current funding level of $286.5 million for the Title X Family Planning Program.
  • Prohibit any funding in the Labor-HHS appropriations bill “for certain entities that provide abortions, including Planned Parenthood. This prohibition applies to all funds in the bill, including Medicaid.”
  • Increase the Maternal and Child Health (MCH) block grant by roughly $25 million from the current funding level of $642 million to $667 million. However, the increase comes at the expense of other health programs for infants and children.
  • Extend the evidence-based Personal Responsibility Education Program (PREP) for two years, through FY 2019, at its current level of $75 million annually.
  • Extend the Title V State Abstinence Education Program for two years, through FY 2019, at its current level of $75 million annually.
  • Extend the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) program through FY 2019 at its current level of $400 million annually.
  • Extend the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) for two years, through FY 2019, but with a number of restrictions that could be harmful.

In addition, the President’s budget proposes deep cuts and restrictions to Medicaid.  These changes will dramatically reduce the number of individuals covered and the quality of the coverage they receive, which would mean less contraceptive coverage and access for low-income Americans.

“While there are a few positives, such as continuing funding for PREP, overall this proposed budget is a huge step backwards. It represents a disturbing retreat from investments in the gold-standard, evidence-based TPP Program, and from high quality contraceptive coverage and access for low-income Americans,” said Ginny Ehrlich, CEO of The National Campaign. “At a time when the country is seeing accelerated declines in teen childbearing, and the first decline in decades in unplanned pregnancy overall, such funding cuts are short-sighted and will greatly affect all young people. Put simply, it’s equivalent to building a skyscraper and abandoning the project halfway through the construction process.”

Polling from The National Campaign shows that 85% of adults favor continuing the TPP Program and PREP (including 75% of Republicans and 89% of Democrats). Our polling also shows that 75% of adults favor continuing the Title X program (including 66% of Republicans and 84% of Democrats). Furthermore, 81% of Americans believe that those who oppose abortion should strongly support birth control (including 74% of Republicans and 86% of Democrats).

“The cuts and restrictions proposed in this budget are at odds with the strong bi-partisan public support for these programs,” Ehrlich said. “Investing in evidence-based teen pregnancy prevention and high quality coverage and access to contraception through Title X and Medicaid helps to save tax dollars, reduce unplanned pregnancy and abortion, and enable greater educational and economic opportunities for all young people in our nation. We urge Congress to reject these harmful budget proposals and to continue funding these and other programs that empower both men and women to decide if, when, and under what circumstances to become pregnant.”

About The National Campaign: The National Campaign is a private, non-partisan, non-profit organization that seeks to improve the lives and future prospects of children and families by preventing teen and unplanned pregnancy. Please visit us at www.TheNationalCampaign.org or follow along on Facebook and Twitter.

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