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Action Alerts



MA Family Planning Demonstration Project Legislation
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Action Alert
Tuesday, August 19, 2003
*ACTION ALERT*
August 19, 2003

To: Wisconsin Pro-Life Supporters

From: Matt Sande, Director of Legislation, and Mary Matuska, Deputy Director of Legislation

Re: MA Family Planning Demonstration Project Legislation
(Assembly Bill 383 and Senate Bill 186)

__________________________________________________

This is a follow-up to last month’s Action Alert requesting your help in encouraging your legislators’ support for Assembly Bill 383 and Senate Bill 186, bills that would cancel minor girls’ access to the destructive Medicaid Family Planning Demonstration Project.

Planned Parenthood, Inc. is on the offensive, launching daily attacks on these bills via their members’ calls, emails and letters to their state representatives and senators. We must COUNTER PLANNED PARENTHOOD’s EFFORTS by demonstrating to our legislators that free, taxpayer funded birth control distributed to underage girls behind parents’ backs is both offensive and dangerous! Representative Glenn Grothman and Senator Joe Leibham, the bills’ authors, are counting on our active support.

Please read the following Action Alert for specific instructions, and let your voices be heard! You can make a difference!! Thanks to all of you who have already contacted your legislators, and please encourage your family and friends to do so as well. God bless.


Your Immediate Action is Needed!

Please call, email or write your state representative and state senator encouraging their strong support for legislation that limits the scope of the Medicaid Family Planning Demonstration Project. Assembly Bill (AB) 383 and Senate Bill (SB) 186, introduced by the Joint Committee for the Review of Administrative Rules – co-chaired by Representative Glenn Grothman (R-West Bend) and Senator Joe Leibham (R-Sheboygan) – would eliminate minor girls’ access to free, taxpayer-funded birth control drugs and devices under the Medicaid Family Planning Demonstration Project.

Specifically, AB 383 and SB 186 would change the minimum age requirement, from 15 to 18 years, for eligibility for the Medicaid Family Planning Demonstration Project which provides "family planning" services to low-income women. To view a copy of the legislation, please click on the following weblinks:

http://www.legis.state.wi.us/2003/data/AB-383.pdf

http://www.legis.state.wi.us/2003/data/SB-186.pdf

NOTE: To be clear, this legislation is specific to the Medicaid Family Planning Demonstration Project and would not eliminate minor girls’ access to birth control under existing family programs such as Title V Maternal Child Health Block Grant funding for family planning services. However, it would mean that additional family planning monies would not reach more minors.

Sample Correspondence

As committed pro-life voters, you are especially influential in legislators’ decision making. The following is a sample correspondence that you can use in contacting your state representative and state senator:

Representative/Senator_____, I strongly encourage you to support AB 383 and SB 186, legislation that would eliminate minor children’s access to free, taxpayer-funded birth control and other "family planning" services under the Medicaid (MA) Family Planning Demonstration Project.

Federal law prohibits parents from being notified that their minor children are receiving free contraceptives under this Project. This undermines parental authority and increases underage pregnancy and abortion by encouraging sexual promiscuity. Contraceptives offer no protection against sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), which have become a full blown epidemic among our teens. For these reasons, I feel we must prohibit minor children’s access to this program.

Please support AB 383 and SB 186. This critical legislation respects parents and protects our kids. Thank you for your consideration.


Contacting Your Legislator:

Please click on the following link for contact information (phone, email, address) for your state representative and state senator:

http://www.legis.state.wi.us/waml/

Please call Matt Sande at Pro-Life Wisconsin (262-796-1111) if you have any questions about who your state legislators are or how to contact them.

Background:

Last April, Pro-Life Wisconsin applauded Representative Grothman and Senator Leibham, co-chairmen of the Joint Committee for the Review of Administrative Rules, for their courageous vote to suspend the destructive Medicaid Family Planning Demonstration Project.

The Committee voted to suspend an emergency rule implementing the new statewide project that would provide birth control to girls as young as fifteen years-old. The project uses state and federal tax dollars to provide reproductive services without parental knowledge or consent. Any Medicaid certified provider is eligible to be reimbursed for services provided including Planned Parenthood, family planning clinics, county health clinics, and family practice physicians.

Pro-Life Wisconsin testified before the Committee that the rule not only works to undermine parental authority in the area of child contraception but also that "family planning" is not (and cannot be) a proven method of reducing underage pregnancies or abortion. In fact, PLW presented compelling data indicating that broad contraceptive availability may actually work to increase underage pregnancy and abortion by encouraging sexual promiscuity.

Unfortunately, the Wisconsin Department of Health and Family Services (DHFS) has ignored the Committee’s rule suspension. DHFS has argued that current statutory law gives the Department clear direction to implement the program with or without administrative rules. This is why Pro-Life Wisconsin needs you to support Representative Grothman and Senator Leibham in their effort to limit the harm of the Family Planning Demonstration Project.