After talking about it for more than a year, Texas governor Greg Abbott is making good on his promise to remove Planned Parenthood's $3.1 million in Medicaid funding, Mic reports.
This means that in 30 days, thousands of low-income women will lose their access to reproductive health care, including birth control, cancer screenings, and prenatal care.
On Tuesday, December 20, Texas officials sent Planned Parenthood a letter saying that the state would cut its Medicaid funding.
The Tribune also reported that the letter referenced the undercover videos from 2015 — in which Planned Parenthood officials discussed the use of fetal tissue for research — to show "that Planned Parenthood violated state and federal law."
"Your misconduct is directly related to whether you are qualified to provide medical services in a professionally competent, safe, legal and ethical manner," the letter says, according to The Texas Tribune.
Even though a grand jury found no evidence that Planned Parenthood had done anything wrong.
"Texas is a cautionary tale for the rest of the nation."
"With this action, the state is doubling down on reckless policies that have been absolutely devastating for women," said Cecile Richards, the president of Planned Parenthood Action Fund, in a release to Revelist. "We will never back down and we will never stop fighting to ensure that Planned Parenthood patients have access to the care they need."
Indeed, nearly 30,000 fewer women received necessary women's health services from the Texas Women’s Health Program (WHP) after the state barred care at Planned Parenthood in 2011, according to a report by the Texas Health and Human Services Commission.
Not only that, but more than half of women in Texas women already report at least one barrier to reproductive health care, including inability to pay, insurance issues, or lack of transportation, childcare, or a health-care provider in their area.
The majority of these women? People of color, low-income individuals, immigrants, and other marginalized groups subject to systemic oppression.
However, there's still hope to keep Planned Parenthood's Medicaid funding.
The organization has 15 days to request an administrative hearing with the Texas Health and Human Services Commission and appeal the decision, says The Texas Tribune; that could delay the funding cut-off.
But Planned Parenthood is making plans to go through the courts to block the cuts, and will seek a preliminary injunction in an ongoing lawsuit filed in November 2015. Federal courts in other states have ruled that Planned Parenthood can't be cut off from receiving Medicaid funding; federal courts have previously warned Texas of the same.
Planned Parenthood and the state of Texas have been butting heads for a long time — but the organization vows that this will not be the end to necessary reproductive health care for the many underserved women in the Lone Star State that it serves.