Florida’s state budget this year has cut a little under $1 million dollars in funding for family planning, while crisis pregnancy centers in the state have yet to see significant cuts.
The portion of the state budget that gives grant and aid money for family planning services to local governments was slashed by about 15 percent – going from $6,220,222 in the 2010/2011 budget, to $5,313,238 in the 2011/2012 budget. Compared to the $6,494,181 allocated in 2009/2010 budget– family planning has seen a cut of over $1 million dollars in the past two years alone.
Recently, states such as Indiana and Kansas have used funding cuts to family planning as political statements of sorts. Both states have passed budgets that de-fund Planned Parenthood, a chain of women’s health clinics that provide family planning services.
Stephanie Kunkel, a spokeswoman for the Florida Association of Planned Parenthood Affiliates, explains that Florida has never directly given money to Planned Parenthood – so there was no chance of a repeat of Indiana and Kansas’ situation in Florida. But according to Kunkel, local governments in Florida are still going to see a decrease in funding for family planning from the state.
“We find it interesting that this funding got cut,” she says. “This is the sort of thing that actually prevents unintended pregnancies.”
Crisis pregnancy centers are awarded money through contracts with the Florida Pregnancy Support Services Program (FPSSP). As the Independent has previously reported, many of these CPCs were found to distribute inaccurate information concerning abortion and still receive minimal oversight from the state of Florida.
Kunkel says that CPC’s have been “held harmless year after year” when it comes time for budget cuts.