Tesla is the latest company to announce it will pay staff travel and living expenses if they have to leave the state for an abortion as companies react to Roe v Wade leak
- Tesla will cover travel expenses for employees who must travel out of state to have abortions, the company announced on Friday.
- The electric car maker is the latest in a string of major US companies to offer such travel refunds or other abortion relief measures
- The announcement comes after leaked Supreme Court documents said that under Roe v. Wade and national abortion rights are likely to be overturned
- Republican lawmakers have already begun drafting and proposing legislation that would prevent or limit companies’ ability to provide abortion assistance.
Tesla has joined the ranks of major companies offering travel compensation to employees seeking abortions but living in states where they are banned.
The news comes days after Supreme Court documents leaked stating that Roe v. Wade would be overturned, nullifying the nation’s right to abortion and leaving the decision to each state.
In its 2021 Impact Report released on Friday, the electric car company said it had expanded its health benefits to include “travel and accommodation assistance for those who may need to seek health services which are not available in their country of origin”.
Tesla moved its headquarters from California to Texas last year, a state where abortions after six weeks were banned, and other states have already begun to introduce abortion restrictions.
Republican lawmakers have already begun to battle with companies providing abortion assistance to their employees, including Texas State Rep. Briscoe Cain, who said he plans to propose legislation that would prevent the local Texas government from dealing with companies that provide such assistance.
Tesla has joined the ranks of major companies offering travel compensation to employees seeking abortions but living in states where they are banned
Musk tweeted in September 2021 that he preferred not to comment on politics, but government should largely stay out of people’s lives
Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida introduced a bill on Wednesday that would prevent businesses from claiming tax deductions for assisted abortion costs.
Musk did not comment on Tesla’s new policy, but in September he tweeted that he believed the government should “rarely impose its will” on the people.
“In general, I believe that government should rarely impose its will on the people and in doing so should aspire to maximize their cumulative happiness. That said, I would prefer to stay out of politics.
The company joins a list of dozens of people who have taken action to provide assistance to employees in response to state moves to block women from accessing abortions.
The Supreme Court is set to overturn the right to abortion in the United States, according to a leaked draft majority opinion that would destroy 50 years of constitutional protections
Pro-choice activists remained outside the Supreme Court until Tuesday morning, hours after Monday night’s bombing
More than 50 U.S. companies have started offering abortion assistance in response to recent abortion-restricting laws, including Amazon, Uber, Lyft, Citigroup, Saleforce and Yelp.
In March, Citigroup said in a filing with regulators that in light of “changes to reproductive health care laws in some states” it will offer travel benefits to “facilitate access to adequate resources “.
Cloud computing giant Salesforce offered to relocate employees from its Texas facilities to other states after the law took effect.
Amazon’s benefit, effective retroactive to January 1, applies if an operation is not available within 100 miles of an employee’s home and virtual care is not possible.
The Supreme Court plans to vote to overturn Roe v. Wade, long considered a frontrunner in securing abortion rights in the United States.
The rulings come as legal analysts believe the Supreme Court, dominated by conservatives following former President Donald Trump’s appointment of three justices, appears poised to possibly overturn Roe v. to the right.
In December, hearing arguments about a Mississippi law that would ban most abortions after 15 weeks, the court’s conservative majority seemed inclined not just to uphold the law, but to reject Roe v. Wade.
The Supreme Court is expected to issue a decision in the Mississippi case by June.
The Guttmacher Institute, a pro-choice research group, said 26 states are “certain or likely” to ban abortion if the Roe is overturned.
More than 50 companies offer a benefit that reimburses staff for abortion care
The online retail giant said it would cover up to $4,000 a year in travel expenses for staff members seeking non-life-threatening medical care, including abortions, if they are not available within 100 miles of their place of residence.
The company announced that it would cover employee travel if they had to leave their state to have an abortion
“In response to changes in reproductive health laws in certain states in the United States, beginning in 2022, we are offering travel benefits to facilitate access to adequate resources,” Citi said in a letter to shareholders.
The dating app company established a fund in September “supporting the reproductive rights of women and people of all genders seeking abortions in Texas.”
“Bumble is founded and run by women, and from day one we’ve stood up for the most vulnerable. We’ll continue to fight against regressive laws like #SB8′
The company, which owns Match.com and dating apps such as Tinder, OkCupid and Hinge, announced a fund in September to ensure its employees could seek reproductive care outside of Texas.
“The company generally does not take a political position unless it is relevant to our business,” CEO Shar Dubey said in a note at the time. “But in this case, personally, as a woman in Texas, I couldn’t keep quiet”
Lyft and Uber
The ride-sharing companies both announced in September that they would create legal defense funds to protect any driver who may be prosecuted under Texas law for driving someone who has an abortion.
Salesforce announced in September that it would help its employees and their families if they wanted to leave Texas after the state passed the nation’s most restrictive abortion law.
Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff tweeted at the time: ‘Ohana if you want to move, we’ll help you get out of TX. Your choice’
Starting in May, Yelp will cover travel expenses for all U.S. employees and their dependents who must travel out of state to access abortion care.
“It’s a priority for us to provide our employees with consistent health coverage, regardless of where they live,” a representative said.