Over the last one and a half decades, there has been an increase in public participation regarding issues relating to sexual reproductive health and contraception. A significant number of individuals believe that the Planned Parenthood organization is primarily a clinic for abortion; however, this is not the case considering the organization serves a greater purpose. For nearly a century, Planned Parenthood has embarked on improving women’s health as well as safety in regards to allowing or advancing women’s right and ability to manage their own fertility despite their race, income, sexual orientation or age (McBride, 2018). As indicated by Engelman (2011), Planned Parenthood offers a variety of safe and affordable contraception methods to their patient, in turn; this reduces the spread of sexually transmitted infections through testing as well as treatment. Due to the increase in cancer cases, the organization offers cervical screening services as well as other cancers that are prevalent in women. Currently, Planned Parenthood has an estimated more than 7 million activists, donors, as well as supporters working in different capacities for women’s health and safety in addition to fighting for the fundamental their reproductive rights (McBride, 2018). Recently, the U.S federal government has been trying to pass the ‘Pence Amendment’, which is set to eliminate funding to Planned Parenthood and similar organizations. Clearly, the significance of such an organization has failed to reach the upper echelons of government a factor that pushes for a clear comprehension of what Planned Parenthood is about aside from what has been aforementioned.
PPFA History and Background Information
Planned Parenthood is one of the oldest non-profit organizations in the United States. PPLA dates back over a century ago after when Margaret Sanger and her sisters Ethel Byrne, and Fania Mindell began their research on birth control and later opened their first a clinic in Brownsville in Brooklyn, New York (Grant, 2014). The three sister distributed birth control drugs, provided the public with information, as well as offering dispense obscene materials at the clinic. During these initial years of PPFA, the law under the Comstock Act prohibited information about family planning; subsequently, the three sisters were arrested and jailed for their work. As indicated by Davis (2005), the case against Sanger and her co-defendants brought national attention as well as support for their cause and in 1936, she won the liberalization of the legislation that kept women attaining pregnancy prevention knowledge. In the 1960s Planned Parenthood became an influential and respected voice in women’s movement in attaining their rights, increased access to birth control, as well as the development of IUD and the pill (Engelman, 2011). In May 1966, the FDA approved the sale of the oral pills primarily because of the information they the state institute received from PPFA.
PPFA Legal Entity Profile
The federal government predominantly funds Planned Parenthood. In 1970, Pesident Richard Nixon signed into law the Family Planning Services and Population Research Act, amending the Public Health Service Act. From this point, Title X provided for the funding of the services provided by PPLA and its affiliates. Nevertheless, overtime the law has changed and currently Planned Parenthood Federation of America is a nonprofit exempt from federal income taxes under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. On the other hand, it should be taken to account that, donations are tax-deductible to the fullest extent allowable under the law. Additionally, the organizations affiliates may have a different classification in reference to the jurisdiction legislation. For instance, Planned Parenthood Action Fund of New Jersey (PPAFNJ) is a nonpartisan, independent, 501(c)(4) non-profit social welfare organization, and the advocacy arm of the Planned Parenthood Affiliates in NJ.
Services Provided By PPFA
For many years, Planned Parenthood has and continues to fight any legislation that may prevent patients particularly those earning low income from accessing aid such as counseling or referrals regarding abortion services, information about birth control and maternal care. Currently, Planned Parenthood is a leading provider of the finest, most affordable healthcare for not only women but also men as well as adolescents globally. As narrated by McBride (2018), PPLA offers pelvic exams, pap tests, and cancer screenings for women. The healthcare center also provides men’s sexual health services such as colon, prostate, and testicular cancer screening. In general, PPFA provides a wide variety of services from educational, counseling, and medical provisions that enable the public to take control of their reproductive health.
Currently, PPFA has two headquarters in the United States, one in Washington, D.C., and another in New York. Additionally, the organization also has three international offices that include a global hub in the British capital London. The aforementioned offices manage 68 medical as well as healthcare affiliates that provide medicinal services to patients in addition to 101 other activist organizations that include 34 lobby organizations all across the globe (Beggan & Allison, 2018). As stated by Speth (2017), an analysis of how PPFA is run indicates that the organization operates over 700 healthcare centers across America in different capacities. A study by Beggan & Allison (2018), showed that PPFA owns property estimated at $54 million in different corporate sector most being in real estate considering that the organization spends approximately $1 million per year for rented space. In 2010, the organization built its largest facility in Houston, Texas, a 78,000-square-foot (7,200-square-metre) structure that serves the PPFA as a mini-hub.
When it comes to the global platform, Planned Parenthood Global, a division of the organization and International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) oversee PFFA’s activities. These two affiliates consist of more than 150 Member Associations working within the borders of 190 nations in all continents (Speth, 2017). A report by Beggan & Allison (2018), indicated that The Bloomberg Philanthropies offered a donation of $50 million for Planned Parenthood Global’s aimed at improving reproductive health and family planning efforts in Africa particularly Tanzania, Nicaragua, Senegal, and Uganda. This is an example of one of the primary reasons why PPFA has affiliates; they are able to dispense large amounts of donations in regions that are in significant need.
Personal Opinion about the Significance of PPFA
Planned Parenthood engages the public when it comes to discussions about reproductive health and this is a significant public service. Unplanned pregnancies lead to unwanted children who in most cases end up on the streets or foster homes due to lack of proper care. A lack of funding or support of PPFA is detrimental to the society considering the clinic offers far much more contraception services than it does abortions. From the data provided it can be argued that Planned Parenthood and its affiliates need better legal coverage; for instance, all donations should not be taxed by the IRS but checked to avoid cases of money laundry.
Beggan, J. K., & Allison, S. T. (2018). Leadership and Sexuality: Power, Principles and Processes. Cheltenham, Gloucestershire: Edward Elgar Publishing.
Davis, T. (2005). Sacred work: Planned Parenthood and its clergy alliances. New Brunswick, N.J: Rutgers University Press
Engelman, P. (2011). A history of the birth control movement in America. Santa Barbara, Calif: Praeger.
Grant, G. (2014). Killer angel: A biography of Planned Parenthood’s Margaret Sanger. Franklin, Tenn: Standfast Books and Press.
McBride, D. E. (2018). Abortion in the United States: A reference handbook. Santa Barbara, Calif: ABC-CLIO.
Speth, J. G. (2017). Global environmental challenges: Transitions to a sustainable world. New Delhi: Orient Longman Private L