Republicans are dreaming of the moment they can deny Planned Parenthood federal funding to offer routine health care services to low-income women, but a new group of high-profile critics is hoping that day never comes.
On Thursday, 74 tech leaders and executives signed and published an open letter to Congressional leaders declaring their support for Planned Parenthood. The signatories include the CEOs of Reddit, Slack, Tumblr, Techstars, Rent the Runway and Giphy.
“As business leaders committed to connecting people with the information and services they need to thrive,” they wrote, “we urge Congress not to pursue any legislation that blocks women from accessing critical preventive care – including well-woman exams, birth control, and cancer screenings – at Planned Parenthood health centers.”
But the authors didn’t just blast the plan for threatening to deprive women of information and services. They also acknowledged how their colleagues and peers — the “driving force behind innovation today” — have relied on the nonprofit health care provider for preventative care.
The open letter comes just a few days after Tumblr CEO David Karp announced the campaign #TechStandsWithPP at the annual conference South by Southwest.
The plan to deny Planned Parenthood federal funding is highly unpopular, though Republicans have defended it by citing voters who do not want Planned Parenthood to receive any federal funding because it provides abortion services. Planned Parenthood, however, gets financial reimbursement to see Medicaid patients — not to pay for abortions.
The tech leaders made their case in the best way Silicon Valley knows how — by invoking the promise of innovation.
“[W]e are connected to Planned Parenthood’s mission which so closely resembles what we stand for as leaders in technology: creating opportunity for everyone to chart their own path in life and pursue their own ingenuity – without barriers or fear,” they wrote.