Planned Parenthood closes office after Kansas cuts off state funding
HAYS, KS, May 23, 2014 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Planned Parenthood has announced it is closing its office in Hays, Kansas, after the state successfully defended a law that effectively cuts off state funds from the abortion provider.
The Hays Health Center offered abortion referrals as well as the morning after pill, which can work as an abortifacient.
A 2010 law written by then-state Senator Tim Huelskamp prioritized public health agencies and hospitals ahead of abortionists when it came to receiving taxpayer-funded family planning money.
In April 2011, Gov. Sam Brownback signed a Fiscal Year 2012 budget that restricted Planned Parenthood's access to $330,000 in Title X family planning funds.
Planned Parenthood, the nation's largest abortion provider, sued to maintain its hold on Kansas taxpayers' dollars that June, arguing that its affiliates that do not perform abortions were being denied their free speech rights for associating with an organization that performs abortions.
The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver ruled in March that argument was invalid.
Planned Parenthood dropped the lawsuit and was forced to pay $1,300 in the state's attorney's fees earlier this month.
Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri (CHPPKM) said it had to close its Hays facility to support its office in Wichita, although both are losing money.
CHPPKM spokeswoman Elise Higgins told the Associated Press, “because of that politically motivated decision, we will no longer be able to use Title X funds to provide health care for free as of June 1."
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Inteirm CEO Ron Ellifrits said in a statement that the closure “will allow Planned Parenthood to continue providing services for as many Kansas women and men as possible while Kansas lawmakers continue to play politics with women's health."
Ellifrits said he will be “fighting every day to maintain, restore, or expand access to health care in Kansas.”
The left-wing website ThinkProgress, a project of the Center for American Progress, noted that Texas has also successfully defunded Planned Parenthood, a development it called “catastrophic.”