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Pennsylvania drops funding for 77 pro-life pregnancy centers

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J-P Mauro - published on 08/15/23

Governor Shapiro ends 3-decade arrangement to fund pro-life centers, in a pro-choice bid to provide fewer choices than ever.

Governor Josh Shapiro of Pennsylvania has announced that the state will not renew its contract with Real Alternatives, a pro-life organizationthat runs 77 pregnancy centers in PA. The decision ends a decades-long arrangement between the state and Real Alternatives.

Catholic Vote reports that Pennsylvania has decided that funds reserved for “women’s health purposes,” which provide $8.2 million annually, will no longer be allocated towards Real Alternatives. The move is expected to place strain on the organization, which provides care for pregnant women throughout the statewho wish to carry their babies to term. The administration has noted that the funds will be available at the request of “other women’s health providers.” 

Shapiro made the announcement on August 3, explaining that he felt that this was one of the moves that the people elected him to make. The statement reads: 

“For decades, taxpayer dollars have gone to fund Real Alternatives,” he said: “My administration will not continue that pattern — we will ensure women in this commonwealth receive the reproductive health care they deserve. Pennsylvanians made clear by electing me as governor that they support a woman’s freedom to choose, and I will be steadfast in defending that right.”

Pennsylvania’s Department of Human Services hailed the move, with Secretary Dr. Val Arkoosh going as far as to suggest that Real Alternatives was somehow tricking patients into carrying their pregnancy to term. She called the defunding of 77 pro-life pregnancy centers a “huge step forward,” stating that “every woman seeking reproductive health care has the right to unbiased, medically accurate care and counsel.”

On their website, Real Alternatives pushed back at this attempt by the state to devalue and misrepresent the services they provide for women who have chosen to keep their babies. The organization reiterated that its mission is to “empower women to protect their reproductive health, avoid crisis pregnancies, choose childbirth rather than abortion, receive adoption education, and improve parenting skills.”

According to its own data, Real Alternatives has served more than 348,000 clients over the course of 27 years in Pennsylvania. In a statement noting these good works as well as awards it has won in service to Pennsylvania’s mothers, Real Alternatives wrote: 

“We believe the governor has been terribly misinformed about the need for the program and its success. The services that this program provides to the women of Pennsylvania are crucial. Approximately 60% of women who come to our program considering abortion choose to bring their baby to term. Also, 84% of women pressured to abort choose to bring their baby to term.”

Read more at Catholic Vote.

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