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Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh ShapiroJessica Kourkounis/Getty Images

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HARRISBURG, Pennsylvania (LifeSiteNews) — Pennsylvania’s Democratic governor, backed by Planned Parenthood, will defund pregnancy support services by the end of the year.

Leftist Governor Josh Shapiro announced that Real Alternatives will no longer receive taxpayer dollars. The decision reflects the Democratic Party’s ongoing battle against pregnancy help centers that provide free diapers and support services to moms and kids.

“For decades, taxpayer dollars have gone to fund Real Alternatives. My Administration will not continue that pattern – we will ensure women in this Commonwealth receive the reproductive health care they deserve,” Gov. Shapiro stated in a news release.

It is not clear how a program that supports women who voluntarily choose to seek supportive services for their pregnancy interferes with “reproductive health care.”

The Pennsylvania Capital-Star reported that Real Alternatives had provided services for 30 years to state residents in need of assistance, with contracts from Pennsylvania.

Shapiro has a track record of working to stop the progress of social service providers who want to help marginalized citizens. As attorney general, he sued the Little Sisters of the Poor for declining to provide hormonal birth control in their health insurance plans. The Catholic order of nuns takes care of elderly citizens living in poverty.

Planned Parenthood cheered the decision. “In a post-Roe world, we can’t settle for state funding of [pregnancy resource centers],” Signe Espinoza, executive director of Planned Parenthood PA Advocates, told the Capital-Star. “We deserve the freedom and the privacy to make our most intimate health care decisions with our doctors and without the predatory influence of anti-abortion counseling.”

Planned Parenthood presumably stands to benefit from the end of the contract, as the pro-abortion governor will likely funnel further money to abortion vendors.

Shapiro took one of his first meetings as governor with Planned Parenthood. “We believe with a champion for reproductive health care in the governor’s mansion, we can build a future where every Pennsylvanian can access the care they need,” Espinoza said in January 2023.

Real Alternatives, pro-life leader criticize decision

Real Alternatives said it was “shocked” by the decision and noted it had a track record of supporting women and families in need.

“For 27 plus years, Real Alternatives and its service providers have served close to 350,000 women at 1.9 million office visits,” the group told LifeNews. “At every visit, women are directed to call Real Alternatives with any complaint or concerns about the services they received. There has never been a complaint from the 350,000 women we have served.”

“Presently, 83 centers throughout the Commonwealth provide compassionate caring support services to 13,500 women a year, from the moment they find out they are pregnant through 12 months after the birth of the baby,” the pro-life group stated. “Those centers are made up of Catholic Charities and social services agencies (48%), pregnancy support centers (37%) and maternity homes (15%).”

The group noted its program has been “commended…by two Pennsylvania governors, three secretaries of the Department of Public Welfare, one United States vice president, and one assistant secretary of the US Health and Human Services in charge of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) funding.”

State senator Doug Mastriano, who ran against Shapiro for the governor’s mansion in 2022, criticized his former opponent.

“Gov. Shapiro’s actions will jeopardize the health of pregnant women and lives of babies across the commonwealth,” Mastriano said in a statement. “Pennsylvania women currently have access to counseling and services that provide resources about parenting, adoption and other healthy alternatives to abortions. Gov. Shapiro’s decision amounts to a death sentence for countless Pennsylvania babies.”

“Pennsylvania women who experience crisis pregnancies deserve to know there are options available to them other than abortion,” Mastriano stated. “It is sad to realize that abortion-on-demand extremists oppose giving women information about the safe and healthy alternatives available to them.”

1 million names against abortion Join us in urging the Supreme Court to stop the killing