Letter: Extend family planning services in Maine
As a young, informed woman and a caring citizen of Falmouth, I am writing to strongly encourage the Maine Legislature to pass LD 1247, “An Act to Expand Coverage of Family Planning Services.”
Access to family planning is vital for individuals to lead happy, healthy and successful lives. By broadening the reach of Medicaid funding to include family planning services, including both contraception and contraceptive counseling, more Mainers will be guaranteed health care coverage for family planning. In our state in 2006, 50 percent of all pregnancies were unintended; these unintended pregnancies commonly result in low educational attainment, unemployment, inadequate prenatal care, unhealthy gaps between children and higher instances of child neglect. In addition, unintended pregnancies are a high cost to Maine taxpayers; if we work to pass LD 1247, however, Maine will save $4 in taxpayer money for every dollar spent on family planning services.
Expanding coverage of family planning services is the responsible choice. Without exception, every citizen deserves to engage in family planning services. Maine has been slow to participate in health care reform, but LD 1247 is our opportunity to ensure accessible, affordable family planning coverage for all. This bill has the capacity to change the lives of Maine citizens, and will enable youth, such as myself, to plan for their families before encountering an unintended pregnancy. I urge you to make the responsible choice by supporting LD 1247, “An Act to Expand Coverage of Family Planning Services.”