Public Comments on Title X Funding

Dear HHS Secretary Alex Azar,

I am writing to you today to express my opposition and concern with President Trump's proposed "gag rule" restricting health care providers that participate in Title X, the nation’s program for affordable birth control and reproductive health care. In my home state of New Hampshire, we have a high-quality network of women’s reproductive health providers with decades of experience and over 18,000 Granite State women and men rely on these critical health care services each year. The impacts of the proposed gag rule would be devastating for women, families, and communities across the state by limiting access, withholding relevant information and deterring women from seeking necessary care. I urge you and your colleagues at HHS to reconsider and withdraw this proposal.

Here in New Hampshire, the Executive Council is responsible for approving the distribution of Title X funds that flow into our state. As a candidate for the Executive Council, I am running to make sure government plays a positive role in promoting the health and well-being of women, families, and communities. The proposed rule would disrupt that outcome. On the Executive Council. the stakes are high. Twice in the past decade, the Council has defunded family planning services by allowing partisan ideologies to get in the way of the health of our communities. The latest gag rule threatens to do the same. 

As you know, if enacted, the "gag rule" would prohibit any Title X health care provider from referring patients for an abortion or providing abortion-related information and care -- even if that’s what the patient wants, and even if withholding that information threatens her health. In my hometown of Manchester, that would directly impact thousands of patients at our Planned Parenthood health center as well as other Planned Parenthood centers across the state and two independent health centers who provide a broad range of reproductive health services for women. It could also impact community health centers and other organizations committed to providing full and unfiltered health care information to their patients. 

I oppose these efforts to deny New Hampshire women access to birth control, cancer screenings, and other services to advance divisive and partisan politics. I urge you to withdraw this rule as it will cause real harm and reduce access to critical health care in my community. 

Sincerely,

Gray Chynoweth

Manchester, NH

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