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2018 MoLeg Wrap-Up: Lawmakers aim to “defund” Planned Parenthood

The Missouri Legislature closed its 2018 regular session on Friday, during which lawmakers passed measures aimed at blocking patients from accessing preventive care at Planned Parenthood health centers.

“By blocking thousands of patients from choosing their provider, the Missouri Legislature could leave them with nowhere to go for birth control and STI testing and treatment. That’s unacceptable,” Planned Parenthood Advocates Director of Policy and Organizing M’Evie Mead said in a release.

While lawmakers spent far too much time attacking Missourians’ reproductive health, they did send some small positive measures to the governor:

  • Increasing access to long-acting reversible contraception (LARC), like IUDs and implants, by permitting health care providers to transfer a new, unused LARC to a different MO HealthNet patient, allowing for same-day insertion. This saves time and expense for the patient and provider, and more than $220,000 annually in taxpayer dollars. (Rep. Dogan’s HB 1499, amended to SB 826)

  • Protections for the health and safety of incarcerated people at Department of Corrections facilities. The measure restricts shackling during the third trimester and the 48 hours after birth. (Revised version of Sen. Nasheed’s SB 803 and Rep. Evans’ HB 1627, amended to SB 870)

  • Requiring school districts that choose to provide sex education to include information on consent, sexual harassment, and sexual violence. (Rep. Rehder’s HB 2234, amended to HB 1606)

  • Extension of substance abuse treatment coverage for new moms up to a year after giving birth. Current coverage ends 60 days postpartum. (Revised version of Rep. Haefner, Rep. Stevens, Rep. Walker, and Rep. Barnes’ HB 2280)

  • Establishing 16 years of age as the universal floor for marriage in Missouri, (Revised version of Rep. Jean Evans’ HB 1630, amended onto SB 655)

Thank you to the legislative champions who stood & fought for Missourians’ sexual and reproductive health and rights this session!

Stand With Planned Parenthood in Your Community

Recap: Missouri Poor People’s Campaign Kickoff

On Monday, May 14, hundreds of St. Louis, Kansas City, and Columbia-area advocates traveled to Jefferson City for the Missouri Poor People’s Campaign Kickoff Day of Action. Supporters from across the state gathered on the grounds of the Capitol to take direct action against poverty and racism. Kansas City activists held a sit-in near the Capitol demanding to be heard by legislators.

Melissa Benton, sexuality educator with Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri spoke about how reproductive health impacts poverty and racism at the St. Louis kick-off rally. Supporters went into the Capitol to hold an impromptu rally in the rotunda, then marched through the hallways singing and chanting. The group entered a Senate hearing on agriculture to provide personal testimony to legislators on the impact of systemic racism, poverty, ecological devastation, and the war economy.

Volunteer & Engagement Opportunities

Join the fight for access to health care on the state and federal levels! Join Planned Parenthood Advocates’ organizers and volunteers to crowd-canvass, make calls, enter data, and connect with your community. You can participate in phone banks in person or remotely!

Find Events Near You

Check Planned Parenthood Action Fund’s national calendar to find events planned in your community!


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