UPDATE: If you want to testify, you can sign up to give oral testimony up until the hearing is over (that’s our understanding as of 9:25am). If you want to only give written, bring 15 copies and drop off at table outside of hearing room (capitol extension, E1.036). If doing oral testimony and handing in written, sign up at the table and give 1 copy to table. When you go in to give your oral testimony, give other 14 copies of written testimony to clerk inside the room.

UPDATE: You can watch a livestream of the hearing here. (h/t)

Here are all the details you will need (I hope):

WHAT is happening tomorrow?: Senator Jane Nelson, Chair of the Senate Committee on Health and Human Services (remember her?), is convening a hearing on women’s health where family planning and preventive health care funding will be discussed.

Whether you can make it tomorrow or not, use the form at this link to send Senator Jane Nelson and her committee a message about how you feel about family planning and preventative health care funding in this state.

WHY is Nelson convening?: According to the committee hearing announcement, it’s to:

Build on previous legislative achievements in women’s healthcare by examining women’s access to preventative health care, pregnancy services, and postpartum care, and exploring ways to expand access and improve quality, particularly in rural and underserved areas of the state.  Monitor the implementation of women’s health programs in Texas.  Assess these programs’ impact on outcomes such as improving access to preventative services, reducing unplanned pregnancies, and achieving cost savings.  Recommend ways to better coordinate the various programs in a manner that increases the number of women served, ensures adequate provider capacity statewide, and maximizes efficiencies to the state.

Legislative achievements!

According to the Texas Freedom Network:

As they were passing the nation’s most restrictive anti-abortion measures, state Sen. Jane Nelson and Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst promised all Texans that they would “roll up [their] sleeves” and have a meaningful discussion about women’s health this year.

Let’s make sure it’s actually meaningful because we know how trustworthy the word of the TX GOP is.

Here is what an email from Planned Parenthood Texas Affiliates had to say about those “achievements”:

Texas women and their families are facing a health care disaster at the hands of out-of-touch politicians. And let’s be clear: Legislators have not restored the programs that provided birth control and well woman exams to low-income women. It is not clear if the $100 million for women’s health care added to the budget at the end the legislative session will reach those women in need. The network of providers in this program excludes providers like Planned Parenthood who traditionally serve the most family planning patients and provide the widest range of reproductive health services.

Some more info:

In 2011, the Texas Legislature made devastating cuts to the State Family Planning Program and as a result 155,000 women lost access to health care in 2012. This represents the dismantling of a safety net that took decades to build and current health care providers are unable to address the need for women’s health care.

As you are keenly aware, relentless attacks against Texas women continued and last summer a restrictive and onerous abortion law was enacted, taking a complex, deeply personal, and constitutionally-protected decision to end a pregnancy from an estimated one out of three Texas women.

It’s incredibly important to note: Legislators have not restored the programs that provided birth control and well woman exams to low-income women. It’s obvious that the need for quality, affordable and cost-saving health care in Texas has never been greater.

WHEN and WHERE (there are 2 events tomorrow): Committee hearing begins at 9:00 AM, Thursday, February 20, in Texas State Capitol extension — room E1.036 (Finance Room). NOTE: There’s one other item on the agenda, so the women’s health part of the hearing may not start exactly at 9am and we don’t know how long this day will go.

There will be a news conference held by the Texas Freedom Network, Planned Parenthood, NARAL Pro-Choice Texas, Whole Woman’s Health, and CPPP at noon in the open air rotunda in the extension (level E2) of the capitol.

Here is a map so you can find the rooms tomorrow, though I imagine there will be people in orange shirts helping to direct people. Also, FYI: elevators are in the north wing of the capitol.

Screen Shot 2014-02-19 at 10.08.54 AM


Here is a .pdf of the map, if that is easier.

WHAT you need to do/know:

13 Responses

  1. I would also add that you can submit written testimony, but you must sign a card at the hearing room in person and bring 15 copies. But if you can’t stay for the hearing, this is one way to get on the record.

    Also, there’s one other item on the agenda, so the women’s health part of the hearing may not start exactly at 9am.

  2. Cameo Williams says:

    Senator Nelson,
    I hope this letter finds you well.
    Unfortunately many of our sisters are not well.
    They are suffering,scared, ill prepared, financially struggling , choosing between time with their children, working extra hours, attending family functions, paying their bills, or getting medical attention.
    The recent shameful changes to women’s healthcare has caused many women to have untreated illness, infections, std’s, birth control, family planning , undiagnosed cancers, and no peace of mind.
    Shame on the bullying of dollars and disrespectful senators putting women’s rights beneathe a book written long ago .
    Your bible has no place in a senate chamber anymore than your opinions have in my bed.
    Good day,
    ( mother of three choices…. My choices.)

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  4. Dalea Lugo says:

    We’ve already seen the women’s health cutbacks done in the Rio Grande Valley Region. Not all women are considered ignorant.

  5. Deby Semon says:

    Please make women’s health care a priority, too many women are suffering needlessly due to the inappropriate thinking of politicians.

  6. Jean Genevie says:

    Senator Nelson,

    I oppose the cuts you made to women’s healthcare. You have restricted access to basic healthcare for many low income working women. Shame on you and your political cronies. You are a disgrace to all Texas women.

  7. If there is no War on Women why do we have TX abortion clinics
    shooting down clinics. This week one was closed in North Harris
    County. Who lives in North Harris County? The population is
    poor, people of color, immigrants, unemployed. The women know
    that they can not handle another child and the father has a low-
    paying job. The woman knows there is no transportation for
    pre-natal care nor the availability of the healthcare that was there a
    short time ago.

    Is this situation one you want for your wives and daughters. If this is not war, what is it? What are YOU doing about it? This is your job.Did you run to make a difference in the lives of people in this state or just to benefit you and your family?

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  9. Pingback: Texas Lawmakers Hold A Hearing To Mark Their ‘Achievements’ In Women’s Health Care

  10. Pingback: Texas Lawmakers Hold A Hearing To Mark Their ‘Achievements’ In Women’s … | Your Ideal Weight Chart

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