Oral arguments were heard before the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver in the matter of Planned Parenthood Association of Utah v. Gary Herbert March 8. Problems started back in August 2015, when Gov. Herbert ordered state agencies to pull federal pass-through funds to Planned Parenthood Association of Utah.
Planned Parenthood Association of Utah‘s website explains the organization’s objections to Herbert’s order:
“This order endangers four programs that receive funds from the federal government through the Utah Department of Health: 1. A program that pays for Chlamydia and gonorrhea testing and treatment for at-risk Utahns, 2. An after school education program funded by a Personal Responsibility and Education Program (PREP) grant to support PPPAU’s education team in replicating and training on an evidence-based curriculum to reduce teen pregnancy rates and increase academic performance, 3. An after school program funded by Utah Abstinence Education Program to promote abstinence from sexual activity with teens, and 4. A 5-year cooperative project to create a system to upgrade the UDOH’s system for submitting STD test results and facilitating statistical analysis.”
Planned Parenthood believes that Herbert’s actions are the result of a video released by the Center for Medical Progress, a pro-life organization. The video was recorded secretly and heavily edited. In the video, two employees from the Center for Medical Progress posed as representatives of a fake biomedical research company, Biomax Procurement Services, who met with a Planned Parenthood employee in an attempt to purchase fetal tissue. Of the seven states that investigated accusations of Planned Parenthood illegally selling fetal tissue, none have found any evidence. A grand jury in Texas cleared Planned Parenthood of any wrongdoing an instead charged the Center for Medical Progress’s founder, David Dandelein, and one of his employees with felony charges, indicting Dandelein. Planned Parenthood does not accept reimbursement for fetal tissue donations.
Karrie Galloway, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Association of Utah, issued the following statement regarding Tuesday’s hearing:
“We went to court today to continue fighting for the thousands of Utahns who rely on Planned Parenthood for affordable, lifesaving health care and education. We feel confident that the court will rule in favor of our patients and education clients. While the court considers our case, our doors will remain open. Utahns can continue to rely on Planned Parenthood for care and education — no matter what.”
For more information, go to ppacutah.org/lawsuit.