NEWARK, NJ — Tuesday, October 15, 2019, at the Wilshire Grand in West Orange, NJ, Planned Parenthood of Metropolitan New Jersey (PPMNJ) will bestow their “Women’s Leadership Champion” award to New Jersey’s First Lady Tammy Murphy. Mrs. Murphy and her husband, Governor Phil Murphy, have made family planning and women’s reproductive rights and health a cornerstone of their administration. Mrs. Murphy also travels the state advocating on behalf of Nurture NJ, a statewide awareness campaign committed to reducing infant and maternal mortality and morbidity. 

PPMNJ, which serves all of Essex, Hudson and Passaic counties, with five health centers, has been forced out of Title X, the nation’s only program for affordable birth control and reproductive health services. The Trump-Pence administration’s Title X gag rule prevents medical providers from discussing abortion access with patients. This is deeply unethical and dangerous for patients, and as a result of the enforcement of this rule, Planned Parenthood affiliates across the country have been forced out of the program. This will have a significant impact on the nearly 20,000 Title X patients PPMNJ sees each year. 

PPMNJ CEO Roslyn Rogers notes, “Although this is an annual event for our affiliate, this year has exceptional significance given the challenges our patients face with the loss of Title X funding. We are proud to have a First Lady who stands with women and continues to support our mission to provide access to affordable health care across Essex, Passaic and Hudson counties.” 

In addition to Murphy, author and activist Anna Quindlen is attending as the event’s keynote speaker. Quindlen, a long time Planned Parenthood supporter, also formerly served as a member on the Planned Parenthood Federation of America Board of Directors.