Bristol Palin took to her blog on Wednesday, Oct. 7, to voice her objection to a public health initiative in Washington that provides free birth control to young, low-income women.
"Do you remember what it was like to be a 10-year-old? I remember being an unabashed tomboy concerned with playing outside and acing 5th grade," the now-24-year-old wrote in the post. "But life isn't so innocent and carefree for some 10-year-olds in Washington State."
She went on to cite a report from conservative group Judicial Watch about the state's "Take Charge" Medicaid plan, which provides birth control, gynecological exams, and family planning education free of charge to eligible women, men, and teens.
The report claims "that some schools in Washington were giving free birth control implants to children as young as 10 years old!" Palin wrote. "These birth control devices are implanted in a girl's uterus, and all of this can be done without a parent's consent!"
In fact, according to a report from the nonprofit Guttmacher Institute — which aims to advance sexual and reproductive health worldwide — minors in a majority of states, including Washington, do not need parental consent for contraceptive services.
Palin — who started working with the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy after she herself got pregnant in high school — appeared to take particular issue with the use of IUDs.
"It is crazy that the government is offering a controversial form of birth control that can have serious life-long side effects to 10-year-old children," she wrote, "but then to do all of this behind a parent's back is simply outrageous!"
IUDs are in fact perfectly safe, according to the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG). Back in 2012, ACOG even recommended that they should be offered as "first-line contraceptive options for sexually active adolescents."
Palin's message about teen pregnancy prevention has generally been one of abstinence. After welcoming son Tripp in December 2008 with her now-ex-fiance Levi Johnston, she teamed up with The Candies Foundation to raise awareness about the consequences of teen pregnancy. In 2010, when she was 19, she told the Associated Press she was going to wait to have sex again until she was married.
Earlier this year, however — not long after calling off her wedding to fiancé Dakota Meyer — the Alaska native revealed she was pregnant with her second child.
"Everyone knows I wanted more kids, to have a bigger family," she wrote in a blog post at the time. "Believing I was heading that way, I got ahead of myself. Things didn't go as planned, but life keeps going. Life moves on."
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