As of July 19, both the evidence-based Teen Pregnancy Prevention (TPP) funding and the Title X Family Planning funding were totally eliminated from the House Appropriations FY18 budget, as proposed by its LHHS Appropriations Subcommittee chaired by Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK). The Senate will take up FY18 budget discussions when Congress returns from its August recess after Labor Day. Senator James Lankford (R-OK) is a member of the Senate Labor, HHS and Education Subcommittee, whose budget includes those programs.
It is important that Oklahomans contact these Congressional members, along with their own Representative, in support of restoring this critical public health funding. In addition to calls and emails, many members will be at events in their home districts in August.
- Tom Cole: DC office – 202-225-6165 Health policy staff member: Matt Diller (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- James Lankford: DC office – 202-224-5754 Health policy staff member: Kevin Kincheloe (email@example.com)
Why these programs matter:
- The TPP funding provides evidence-based programs for youth populations at high risk for teen pregnancy, and supports innovative strategies for reaching underserved youth in more relevant, cost-effective ways. Communities and tribes can select from an extensive menu of rigorously evaluated programs, using programs that best meet the needs of their youth at different ages and in different settings. They offer a variety of approaches – abstinence, abstinence and contraception, and youth development. The programs are based on evidence, not ideology or a single mandated approach. Currently, almost 100% of the funding that supports evidence-based TPP programs in Oklahoma comes from federal sources. No state dollars have supported TPP for well over a decade.
- For over 40 years, the Title X Family Planning Program has provided contraception for low income women and families and is one of the greatest public health success stories in the U.S. It saves tax dollars by reducing unintended pregnancy, poverty, poor health outcomes, child abuse and neglect, unemployment, and a host of related problems. It improves the economic well-being of women and families, moving more families into the middle class and giving them the ability to determine the size of family they want and can support.