McAllen's Planned Parenthood battles state funding cuts

Planned Parenthood is battling funding cuts.

They said Senate Bill 1854 could jeopardize health care for 26,000 Texans, and now their clients are joining in on the fight.

The campaign is called Texans Stand with Planned Parenthood and already on facebook people have posted pictures of themselves holding signs supporting the organization.

Planned Parenthood is an organization that provides family planning services including STD testing, treatment, preventative tests and screenings.

They function mostly through government funds in order to provide free to little cost services, but Senate Bill 1854 could ban Planned Parenthood from participating in the Women's Health Program and could iscontinue the entire program if Planned Parenthood challenges the ban in court and wins.

"This is unfortunate because it is financially irresponsible because this program save Texas money," said Patricio Gonzales, Starr and Hidalgo County Planned Parenthood CEO. "It saves them Medicaid births. Texas has right now 56 percent of its births as Medicaid births and the family planning program prevents that because it puts women on birth control."

The women's health program provides contraception to women and qualifies pregnant low income women for a Medicaid paid birth.

Gonzales said if the bill passes, it could eliminate health care for 90,000 Texas women.

The Planned Parenthood Office in McAllen at 916 East Hackberry Street will hold a rally protesting the bill Wednesday, May 11 at 5 p.m. outside the building.

Click here to read a full text copy of Senate Bill 1854