Philly mayor seeks ban on feeding homeless outside
because the state won’t let Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers participate.
Cindy Mann, director of the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, said Thursday she regretted the move but said her agency had no choice after Texas this week began enforcing a law barring state funding from clinics affiliated with abortion providers.
The Women’s Health Program provides care to about 130,000 low-income participants, and federal funds had covered 90 percent of its costs.
Gov. Rick Perry has instructed state health officials to find funding for the $40 million program without federal support.
“It is the height of political posturing for the Obama administration to put the interests of abortion providers and their affiliates, like Planned Parenthood, over the well-being of more than 100,000 low-income Texas women,” Mr. Perry said in a statement Thursday. “I will not stand by and let this administration abandon these Texas women to advance its political agenda. Texas will fund these services with or without the federal government.”
PHILADELPHIA | Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter wants to ban community organizations from feeding the hungry and homeless in city parks.
Nutter said he wants the homeless to eat indoors, where mental health and medical services can be provided.
But organizations that already serve meals outdoors said the ban is a ploy to get the homeless out of high-traffic areas, like the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, home to many of the city’s museums.
Mr. Nutter said the true aim is to offer better and safer food to the hungry. He said the city will set up a temporary space for serving meals at City Hall’s northwest corner and offer free food-safety classes for organizations that want to serve meals.
The ban will take effect following a 30-day comment period.
Two other men were arrested earlier on rape charges related to what authorities said was the prostitution of a 10-year-old boy by the Troy man.