This morning, commuters at the Westfield train station had the opportunity to talk with supporters of Planned Parenthood Action Fund of New Jersey about the upcoming gubernatorial election and the impact it will have on reproductive health and rights in our state. The message was clear: a vote in support of women’s health is a vote for Phil Murphy.

Activists spent the morning talking to riders and passing out literature comparing Phil Murphy and Lieutenant Governor Kim Guadagno. Phil Murphy is the only candidate who promises to restore funding for family planning services that have been cut by the Christie administration. Since these funds were first cut in 2010, bacterial STD cases have increased 20.6 percent in Union County and 35 percent statewide. Murphy’s opponent, Lt. Gov. Guadagno, is on record opposing funding for Planned Parenthood and other family planning providers. While Guadagno claims to be “pro-choice,” she wants to withhold funds from Planned Parenthood because it provides abortions. Opinion surveys show that even Republicans are opposed to cutting those funds.

“The Christie administration has left a terrible legacy on women’s health in New Jersey,” said Christine Sadovy, Political and Legislative Director with Planned Parenthood Action Fund of New Jersey. “Our supporters are out in full force to protect women’s health by electing Phil Murphy, who will ensure that women have access to the reproductive health care we need."

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Women’s health is a key issue for voters in this election. Recent polling from the New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute and the Eagleton Center for Public Interest Polling at Rutgers showed that 84 percent of New Jersey voters believe Medicaid should continue reimbursing Planned Parenthood for preventive reproductive health care services — reimbursements which are under attack as Congress repeatedly attempts to “defund” Planned Parenthood at the federal level.

“Now more than ever, women are confronted with uncertainty around the future of access to our health care,” said Sadovy. “We have an opportunity to elect a governor who will fight to protect and expand reproductive health access.”

This morning’s Westfield canvas was just one of a series train station events. Every week until the election, Planned Parenthood Action Fund of New Jersey volunteers are visiting communities across the state to talk about the importance of this election on the future of women’s health. A schedule of upcoming events is available at www.ppactionnj.org/2017-election/.