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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Approved Budget Cuts Repro Health Funding, Excludes Global Gag Rule

April 19, 2011 – Following months of intense debate, Congress passed a budget (H.R.1473) on April 14 to fund the government for the rest of fiscal year 2011. While it excludes some of the more extreme policy riders proposed by the House, it still includes cuts to sexual and reproductive health programs. Below are select health highlights from the bill:

- $615 million for international family planning and reproductive health programs, which represents a 5% reduction from FY 2010 levels of $648.5 million. The $615 million includes $575 million for bilateral family planning programs provided through the U.S. Agency for International Development.

- $40 million contribution to the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), which is $15 million lower than FY 2010 and reverts back to FY 2008 spending levels.

- Maintains funding for Title X family planning programs in the United States and for domestic teenage pregnancy prevention programs that House lawmakers sought to cut.

- Excludes policy riders such as the Global Gag Rule and a ban on U.S. contributions to the UNFPA that House lawmakers also proposed to include.

Overall, the measure reduces spending by $38.5 billion from FY 2010 levels and represents the largest non-defense reduction in history. The bill passed in the House (260-167) and in the Senate (91-19).

Thank you for your support in writing Congress and spreading the word over the last few months, which helped avert some of the most devastating cuts to women’s health sought by House lawmakers.

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