Tennessee governor Bill Lee announced a plan to allocate $100 million to pregnancy resource centers during his State of the State address on Monday.
Though nearly all preborn children in the state are protected from abortion, Lee pointed out that mothers and families need extra support to care for their children. Lee’s proposal would also expand Medicaid eligibility for pregnant women and parents, cover the cost of diapers for Medicaid-eligible parents, and increase paid parental leave for state employees.
“There was a significant shift in this country last year when it comes to protecting the lives of the unborn,” Lee said, referring to the overturn of Roe v. Wade. “We now all have an opportunity, a moral obligation, to support strong Tennessee families.”
“Pro-life is much more than defending the lives of the unborn. It’s not a matter of politics; this is about human dignity,” he said, as protestors in the gallery attempted to shout over him. “I’m talking about the dignity of the expecting mother working multiple jobs to make ends meet, the dignity of a baby born three months too early, the dignity of a father living with a disability, and the dignity of a family in crisis.”
After outlining his ideas for the program, he noted, “If approved, Tennessee will be the first Medicaid program in the nation to implement this kind of support. That’s pro-life. That’s pro-family.”
This year, TN has the opportunity to further strengthen postpartum care for mothers & extend @TennCare services to more than 25,000 additional women, children & families in need.
We are committed to supporting strong families & serving the most vulnerable. pic.twitter.com/TCI7yxDkn7
— Gov. Bill Lee (@GovBillLee) February 8, 2023
Pregnancy resource centers have long been one of the strongest resources for women and their children. Though they have been under substantial attack since the overturn of Roe v. Wade — and are now being referred to as “anti-abortion centers” by mainstream media — they continue to be a lifeline for families who need assistance.
The centers provide a wide range of services, including pregnancy testing, ultrasounds, and maternity and baby items including formula, furniture, clothing, and more. Many provide practical parenting classes and support for families. The centers also refer families in need for state services, financial help, housing and legal help, professional counseling, child care, and prenatal care.
Reports have shown that over 800,000 valuable human lives have been saved from abortion in just the last five years, thanks to the work of these centers.
Lee’s proposals will now go to the state legislature for approval.
Did you know that as little as $10 a month is enough to reach more than 3,000 people with the truth about abortion that no one else is telling them? Click here to start saving lives 365 days a year.