The Lumineers announced on Friday (Feb. 24) that they will donate all the profits from their Feb. 28 show in Dallas to Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas. They explained that they were making the pledge before taking the stage at the Verizon Theatre at Grand Prairie as a reaction to Republican efforts to defund PP in Texas.
“When my wife was a teen and young adult, Planned Parenthood provided her not only with free/affordable cancer screenings, contraceptives and annual checkups, but also with the education and tools to help make smart decisions regarding her health,” lead singer Wesley Schultz explained in a statement. “The reality for her was that Planned Parenthood was her only real way to get legitimate and affordable healthcare. To read news stories about attempts to defund this same healthcare in Texas for so many women (and men) is disturbing and has moved us to act.”
The statement pointed a white paper from the American Public Health Association that said the impact of repeated efforts to cut or restrict funds for family planning “have left tens of thousands of Texans without access to cancer screenings, birth control, HIV tests and other preventive care. This is about denying people access to basic health care from the provider they know and trust, and has had devastating impacts on the community already,” the Lumineers wrote in summarizing the report.
President Trump pledged as a candidate to defund Planned Parenthood, and House Speaker Paul Ryan said in January that Republicans will move soon to strip all federal funding from the group, as part of their plan to unwind Obamacare. PP is the nation’s leading reproductive healthcare provider and despite repeated conservative attempts to strip away federal funding from the organization — over claims that it uses those funds to provide abortions — PP has steadfastly fought those efforts by reminding legislators that federal law prevents it from using those funds to pay for abortions.
In fact, according to PP, most of the money it gets from the federal government is in the form of Medicaid reimbursements (some from the Title X provision) for preventive care; at least 60 percent of PP patients rely on public health programs like Medicaid and Title X for their preventive and primary care.
As noted in the Lumineers announcement, “each year more than 120,000 Texans count on them [Planned Parenthood] for family planning and sexual healthcare.” The group included a link to send donations or get more information. Fans can also text “DALLAS” to 41444 to donate, or text “STAND” to 22422 to get involved.