**Rule change follows the delegation’s push for the Biden admin to expedite the reversal of the Title X Gag Rule**
(Washington, DC) – U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Maggie Hassan (D-NH) and U.S. Representatives Annie Kuster (NH-02) and Chris Pappas (NH-01) today applauded an announcement from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that, following the delegation’s push, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) will approve a rule change to reverse the Title X Gag Rule that decimated federal funding for the majority of New Hampshire’s family planning centers.
This announcement is particularly crucial given the New Hampshire Executive Council’s recent vote to defund four family planning providers, three of which were already facing serious funding shortfalls because of the Title X Gag Rule. The restoration of Title X funding will help offset the consequences of the Executive Council’s vote, helping providers avoid further cuts to services and staving off higher costs for essential health care.
“Granite Staters are experiencing a full-on assault targeting reproductive rights and women’s bodies – from the Executive Council’s dangerous move to defund family planning providers to Republicans including an abortion ban and imposing unnecessary ultrasound requirements in the state budget. The restoration of Title X funding can’t come soon enough, and I’m pleased the Biden administration heeded our calls to reverse the gag rule and help providers continue their essential services,” said Senator Shaheen. “Women – and particularly vulnerable and low-income women – are the ones who bear the brunt of these dangerous attacks on access to health care. I’m committed to ensuring providers have the funding and resources they need to deliver necessary care to Granite Staters in every corner of the state, and I’ll always defend women’s Constitutional reproductive rights.”
“This is welcome news. Women’s rights and reproductive health are under attack in this country, and today’s decision to reverse the gag rule and restore family planning services is a relief for millions of women - including thousands of Granite Staters - who have seen attacks on their liberty. This is only one step though, and I’m going to continue to speak out and stand up to defend a woman’s right to make her own health care decisions. Women do not need leaders in Washington or Concord restricting their freedom and we should continue to empower women to have the full capacity to participate in our democracy and economy,” said Senator Hassan.
“The Trump administration’s dangerous Title X ‘gag rule’ kept millions of women in New Hampshire and across the country from receiving full and accurate information from their health care providers about abortion and reproductive care options, and I am pleased to see the Biden administration heed calls for action and finally reverse this dangerous measure,” said Rep. Annie Kuster. “As coordinated, right-wing attacks on women’s autonomy and reproductive freedoms continue in the Granite State and across the country, this reversal is a step in the right direction. I will continue working to ensure a woman’s reproductive decisions are between her and her doctor, not the government.”
“The announcement today that the disastrous Title X gag rule is being repealed is welcome news for New Hampshire’s family planning providers and the patients they serve. This change will allow them to re-enroll in Title X and seek federal funding without losing the ability to offer important health information and care,” said Rep. Chris Pappas. “We must overcome the extreme political attacks on family planning services and reproductive health care that undermine the health, safety, and security of Granite Staters. I’m pleased the administration has taken this critical step forward, and I remain committed to fighting at the federal level to protect and improve access to health care.”
Two weeks ago, the delegation sent a letter to OMB to ask for its immediate approval of a rule change to reverse the Title X Gag Rule that decimated federal funding for the majority of New Hampshire’s family planning centers. That followed the delegation’s letter to the Biden administration calling for the swift distribution of supplemental assistance directly to providers impacted by the Executive Council’s decision. In June, Senator Shaheen sent a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra urging him to provide support to New Hampshire family planning providers who will lose state funding under the New Hampshire budget.
Following the New Hampshire Executive Council’s recent vote to terminate contracts for family planning providers across the state, the delegation hosted a press event with representatives from Planned Parenthood of Northern New England, Equality Health Center and Lovering Health Center to discuss the dangerous consequences. On Friday, Shaheen hosted a roundtable discussion in Concord with representatives from Planned Parenthood of Northern New England and Equality Health Center to discuss the vote’s devastating impacts, including the potential for higher costs and cuts to essential health care services for 12,000 Granite Staters.