There Isn’t A Recess for Those in Need of Health Care

Washington, DC - The day after the Senate vote on Trumpcare was delayed, a crowd of 1,500 Planned Parenthood supporters and patients joined coalition partners in a "Linking Together March to Save our Care" at the US Capitol. The march and rally were a massive show of pink force against Trumpcare and efforts to block women from accessing preventive care at Planned Parenthood.

The Senate health care repeal bill is the worst bill for women’s health. It slashes Medicaid, guts maternity care, and blocks women from getting preventive care like birth control and cancer screenings at Planned Parenthood.

The fight takes on more urgency as June draws to a close and the devastating effects of a similar ‘defunding’ law begin taking effect in Iowa. This Friday, four Planned Parenthood health centers in Iowa will close and nearly 15,000 Iowans will lose access to their trusted provider of birth control, cancer screenings, STD tests, and other preventive care -- all because of a dangerous new “defunding” law passed by the Republican-controlled state legislature. What’s happening in Iowa makes clear the impact for women nationwide if Congress “defunds” Planned Parenthood via Trumpcare.

Quote from Cecile Richards, President of Planned Parenthood Action Fund

It’s no wonder thousands of people rallied in front of the capitol and across the U.S. this week: This is the worst bill for women’s health in a generation. Trumpcare would kick 22 million people off of their health insurance, and prohibit patients from coming to Planned Parenthood for preventive health care. We may have delayed this vote, but this fight isn’t over yet. Now, more than ever, it's important for people to speak out and make it clear that we will not stand to see Congress take away basic access to health care.

Some media highlights of the march and rally include:

Huffington Post: “Most of the crowd on Wednesday, which was filled with pink Planned Parenthood T-shirts, hailed from the metropolitan Washington area. Livestreams of the event were broadcast on Facebook to hundreds of thousands of people.”

CNN: “Over a thousand chanting activists walked a lap around the Capitol building Wednesday evening to protest the American Health Care Act. The march was part of a three-day "People's Filibuster," co-organized by more than 19 groups, including the ACLU, Planned Parenthood and American Federation of Labor. ‘We had so many patient advocates show up in force,’ Planned Parenthood federal campaigns director Graeme Joeck said. ‘We hope this sends a clear message that our voices have put a delay, and that this bill will not last.’"

CNN: “Philadelphia resident Signe Espinoza, 24, kicked off the post-march rally by sharing her personal health care experience on stage. ’I rely on Medicaid. I have relied on Medicaid for a really long time, and my parents rely on Medicaid. If this vote passes, millions of people just like me will be affected,’ Espinoza said.”

The Hill: “Planned Parenthood supporters and other opponents of the Republican effort to repeal and replace ObamaCare formed a human chain around the Capitol Wednesday afternoon in a massive protest amid GOP attempts to save their healthcare bill. Demonstrators held signs reading "Stand with Planned Parenthood" and "Don't Take Away Our Care" while chanting "healthcare, now!" The goal of the protest was to form a continuous human chain around the entire Capitol.”

The Hill: “Thousands of protesters had joined the march less than an hour after it was scheduled to begin. Protesters with massive Planned Parenthood banners and megaphones led chants, while other Planned Parenthood volunteers in special vests directed protesters...Last week, Planned Parenthood held similar rallies against the Senate bill in at least 20 states. The bill in its current state would defund Planned Parenthood for a year.”

Mother Jones: “Senate Republicans may have ditched their plans to hold a health care vote this week, but that didn’t stop protesters from flooding the US Capitol grounds Wednesday afternoon to voice their opposition to the GOP’s plan to repeal Obamacare. The protest, dubbed Linking Together: March to Save our Care, was organized by a host of liberal groups, including Planned Parenthood, the ACLU, SEIU, and others.”

Shareblue: “Pelosi, wearing pink, gave a shout-out to one of the rally’s main organizers, Planned Parenthood. When discussing the GOP bill, Pelosi noted, ‘We don’t agonize — we organize.’... To capitalize on ‘our moment,’ Jillian McLeod-Tardiff flew in for the rally from Portland, Maine….When asked what her message was to others back in Maine and around the country, she said, ‘If you’re not involved, now’s the time.’”

Washington Post: “‘It's a sign of how powerful people's voices can be,’ said Erica Sackin, director of political communications at Planned Parenthood. ‘But it's too soon to claim victory. The bill is moving fast and it may have been delayed, but we know that the fight’s not over.’”

###

Planned Parenthood Action Fund is an independent, nonpartisan, not-for-profit membership organization formed as the advocacy and political arm of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. The Action Fund engages in educational and electoral activity, including voter education, grassroots organizing, and legislative advocacy.