Texas-based Tesla Inc. is among a small but growing number of U.S. companies offering to cover travel expenses for employees who need to cross state borders for medical treatment, including abortion.
Companies offer these benefits as the landscape of state and federal abortion policies in America changes. Texas implemented the country’s strictest abortion law in November last year when it banned abortion after six weeks of pregnancy and put residents to enforce the rule. Other states including Idaho, Florida and Oklahoma have passed laws in recent months that tighten access to the procedure.
Earlier this week, a leaked draft statement from the Supreme Court indicated that the court may be preparing to overturn Roe v. Wade, the 1[ads1]973 precedent that established a constitutional right to abortion.
The 67-page draft, first reported Monday by Politico, declared Roe “extremely wrong and deeply damaging.”
Supreme Court Justice John Roberts said in a statement Tuesday that the draft, written in February, was not necessarily the final solution to the case. The court is expected to issue its opinion by the end of June or the beginning of July.
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If Roe v. Wade is overthrown, it will open the door to stronger state restrictions, including a ban on the procedure.
Companies that offer to help employees travel to have an abortion may be on a secure legal basis at the moment, but that may change.
Texas’ abortion law extends the responsibility to abortion clinics and doctors, as well as those who help an abortion. Oklahoma and Idaho have enacted similar legislation. Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt passed the law this week, and Idaho’s law was temporarily blocked in court. Some legislators have meanwhile pushed back on the new company’s guidelines.
Here you can see some of the companies that have extended benefits:
Tesla, TSLA -0.87% ▼ which announced the relocation of headquarters in October to Austin, Texas, said in its “Impact Report” for 2021 that the company has an expanded “health insurance offering that includes travel and lodging support for those who may need to apply. health services not available in the home country. ” Tesla did not respond to a request for comment Friday.
Headquartered in Seattle, Amazon.com Inc. told employees it would reimburse up to $ 4,000 annually for travel expenses for medical treatments, including abortions, which employees do not have access to within 100 miles of their homes.
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Citigroup Inc. said in a proxy submission to the shareholders’ meeting in April that as of this year, it offers travel benefits for employees to seek resources due to changes in reproductive health laws. More than 10,000 full-time and part-time employees of Citi live in Texas.
Yelp Inc., based in San Francisco, offers employees and their relatives financial assistance through insurance if they need to travel out of state to have an abortion. Yelps YELP -4.34% ▼ health insurance currently covers abortion care.
Technology giant Apple Inc., which is expanding its presence in Austin with a new $ 1 billion, 3 million square foot campus, also said health insurance policies cover abortion services and travel fees if necessary.
California-based Levi Strauss & Co. have said they will reimburse medical travel expenses for full-time and part-time employees.
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Match and Bumble
Match Group Inc., the parent company of dating apps like Tinder, OkCupid and Hinge, and dating app company Bumble Inc. created funds last year to help employees who need to travel outside of Texas to have an abortion. Both companies are based in Texas.