CPHA-N EQUAL Health Network CPEHN
Government Shutdown Threatens Public Health
Women’s Health, Greenhouse Gas Emission Protection, Health Care Reform at Risk
The public’s health would be a collateral casualty of caustic ideological battles over the national budget. Republican demands to defund family planning and to stop EPA regulation of greenhouse gas emissions have brought the federal government to a standstill. Crippling the popular Planned Parenthood clinics and lowering air pollution standards would profoundly damage the health of the nation and of California.
Women and men in many of the poorest neighborhoods rely on Planned Parenthood facilities for basic health care services, family planning, HIV care and cancer screenings. The Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California, Inc., has been instrumental in public policy for the health of women and girls.
These ideologically-driven “social riders” to the proposed budget would also eliminate funds for implementation of the Affordable Care Act and the new consumer protection bureau, leaving hundreds of thousands of families struggling to afford medical care.
Cuts could also fall on the Center for Infectious Diseases & Emergency Readiness at the University of California Berkeley, the only research center in the United States on radiological and nuclear public health preparedness.
The proposed $60 billion in cuts that Congressional Republicans have demanded this year, and trillions to come, would devastate the very projects that could revitalize jobs and ensure prosperity. Millions of people’s livelihoods depend on publicly funded transportation, infrastructure, education, and health care.
In addition, the shutdown itself will weaken the fragile economy, immediately placing 800,000 federal workers on furlough, suspending paychecks for soldiers and delaying business loans.
We need to develop a comprehensive solution that revitalizes federal revenues, while requiring those who benefit the most from our society’s infrastructure to pay the most to ensure its upkeep. Taxes for corporations and for wealthy individuals declined over the last decade, resulting in signficant income disparities between the rich and the poor in the U.S., and leading to health inequalities. Reversing tax giveaways to the super-rich and the nation’s largest corporations could raise $4 trillion within a decade.
We stand in support of reproductive and public health and against the threat of climate change! We urge our federal representatives to insist that these important programs continue!
California Public Health Association-North www.cphan.org
EQUAL Health Network www.equalhealth.info
California Pan-Ethnic Health Network www.cpehn.org