The following is a statement from OCRJ president Martha Skeeters, which was sent to the media in response to the recent decision by the state of Oklahoma to stop funding WIC services provided by Planned Parenthood.
Talking points and contact for advocacy below.
Planned Parenthood has been providing WIC services in Tulsa since 1994. Every month, Planned Parenthood provides these services more than 3,000 times. Now, for no apparent reason, the state has decided to cancel Planned Parenthood’s contract to deliver these services. Oklahoma families are struggling financially due to the economy – eliminating three sites that serve over 38,000 WIC visits will make it even harder for these women and their children to access basic food needs.
More than 50% of all infants born in Oklahoma receive WIC services. Eliminating the number of service sites does nothing to help these infants. And transferring these services away from accessible and familiar sites makes life more difficult for vulnerable women and their children. There is no apparent reason for the cancelling of Planned Parenthood’s contract. It appears to be a political maneuver by politicians who want to “get rid” of Planned Parenthood. Planned Parenthood works every day to keep women and families healthy, and the Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice supports this organization as it seeks to continue providing services for women and children.
This isn’t about Planned Parenthood but rather the women served every day.
Here are talking points and contact info to fight back against this political agenda.
The most important think is to ensure that women have uninterrupted access to WIC services from a provider they know and trust.
This political strategy aimed at destroying Planned Parenthood will do nothing to improve access to important WIC services. We will stand up for Okalhoma women and families and demand that longstanding WIC service facilities continue to be funded.
Phone: (405) 521-2342 (Oklahoma City) or (918) 581-2801 (Tulsa)
Terry Bryce, chief, Oklahoma WIC Services
Phone: (888) 655-2942 or (405) 271-4676
Terry Cline, commissioner, Oklahoma State Department of Health
Phone: (800) 522-0203 or (405) 271-5600