Abortion at the expense of the employer: companies in the US massively offer employees a new bonus
The Supreme Court ruled in Roe v. Wade, effectively ending women's access to abortion in many parts of the US. Uber, Nike, Lyft, Disney, JP Morgan and other top companies promise to help employees access abortions, reports Insider.
“We believe that the Constitution does not give the right to abortion,” the majority of Supreme Court justices wrote in a decision taken Friday morning. “The right to regulate abortion must be returned to the people and their elected representatives.”
Given the widespread impact on half the workforce in anti-abortion states, experts said companies based in jurisdictions where abortion is illegal would face hiring and retention consequences and even possible legal threats.
Even before the decision was made, some businesses had begun offering support to workers affected by the long-foretold court ruling. Others have remained silent on the matter.
Amazon has publicly stated that it will cover the costs of employees attempting abortions in states where abortion is illegal.
Apple CEO Tim Cook said the tech giant will cover the costs of employees who "travel out of state for medical care if it's not available in their home state."
The telecommunications giant said in a statement: "The health of our employees and their families is important to our company, and we provide benefits that cover travel costs for medical procedures that are not available within 160 miles of their home."
Previous Insider reports have shown that AT&T has given about $1,2 million to leaders supporting the US abortion ban. It is the single largest company behind the so-called trigger laws, or laws that would effectively ban abortion in several states, given the Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade's ruling.
The media company confirmed that it offers travel benefits that cover medical services and procedures not available in the employee's area of residence, up to $4000 per trip and three trips per year. Abortion services are covered.
Condé Nast CEO Roger Lynch sent out an email to workers saying the company's "most powerful" response will be through its "clear editorial lens."
Condé Nast also announced that it "will help insured employees and their dependents access reproductive care regardless of where they live."
“Today, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the constitutional right to abortion, allowing individual states to more aggressively regulate or outlaw the procedure,” CEO Roger Lynch wrote in a note to employees. “This is a devastating blow to reproductive rights that have been protected for almost half a century.”
“Ensuring access to safe, legal and high-quality healthcare services is one of our top priorities,” the pharmacy giant said in a statement. “We will continue to provide colleagues, clients and consumers with the flexibility to choose medical and pharmacy benefits based on their needs, including making out-of-state care available to our insured employees who live in states that have laws restricting access to procedures."
Dick's Sporting Goods
Dick CEO Lauren Hobart posted on LinkedIn that she is protecting the health and well-being of her employees.
“In response to today's decision, we are announcing that if the state where one of our teammates lives restricts access to abortion, DICK'S Sporting Goods will provide up to $4000 in travel reimbursement to get to the nearest location where this assistance is available. in law. This benefit will be given to any teammate, spouse or dependent enrolled in our health plan, plus one support person,” the retail CEO said.
“We recognize that people have different and particular concerns about this topic, and that there are teammates and athletes who will not agree with this decision. However, we also recognize that decisions regarding health and family are deeply personal and are made with thoughtful consideration,” she added.
A spokesman for Disney said the company was "talking directly" with its employees to "understand the impact of the decision." The company's travel benefits will cover pregnancy-related decisions, and the company reiterated its commitment to providing affordable health care for all employees, regardless of location.
“As a company, we believe that each of our employees should decide when to start a family and have access to a full range of healthcare services,” wrote HP CEO Enrique Lores.
In a May statement, the information technology and equipment company said it will continue to support employees in need of out-of-state reproductive care and will cover related travel costs.
The career platform said in a statement: “Employees with Indeed insurance will be reimbursed for travel expenses for covered medical procedures that are not available where they live.”
“At Indeed, we believe we need women and women need access to safe and affordable health care,” the statement said. “Anything that restricts women's freedom to make their own decisions about their health harms them and society. Limiting access to safe and affordable health care will hit marginalized communities hardest, especially people of color and low income people.”
Johnson & Johnson
A spokesman for the pharmaceutical and consumer goods giant said in a statement that the company is offering compensation for US employees who need to travel for medical services not available within 160 miles of their home, including reproductive health.
“As the world's largest healthcare company, we are committed to improving access to care, creating healthier communities and making health more accessible to the people we serve,” the spokesperson said. “We also believe that health care decisions are best made by people in consultation with their healthcare provider.”
The institution assured its employees that it would pay for their trips for abortions.
A Kroger spokesperson said that employees using the company's health plan have access to a "comprehensive benefit package that includes quality, affordable healthcare and travel benefits up to $4000 to facilitate access to quality care for multiple categories of medical procedures and the full range of reproductive health services, including abortion and fertility treatment.
In a statement, a spokesperson for the clothing company highlighted the brand's donations to non-profit organizations dedicated to reproductive rights and said: "We strongly oppose any action that interferes with the health and well-being of our employees, which means opposing any move to limit access to the full range of protection services. reproductive health, including abortion. Reproductive rights protection is a critical business issue affecting our workforce, our economy and progress towards gender and racial equality. Given what is at stake, business leaders need to speak up, they have heard and taken action to protect the health and well-being of our employees.”
In an Instagram post, Live Nation pledged to cover travel expenses for employees who need access to women's health care, as well as bail expenses for employees arrested during peaceful protests.
The ridesharing company has promised legal support to drivers facing legal action for taking passengers for abortions.
“We believe access to healthcare is essential and transportation should never be a barrier to that access,” a Lyft spokesperson said. “This decision will harm millions of women by depriving them of access to safe and private reproductive health services.”
Meta said in a statement that it plans to reimburse travel expenses for employees who need to access out-of-state reproductive health services.
In a Facebook post, longtime Meta COO Sheryl Sandberg announced the Supreme Court's decision.
“I grew up listening to my mom tell stories about what women in our country went through before Rowe,” she wrote. “My mom had a friend who left the country to get a safe abortion. Most women couldn't afford it; some performed clandestine abortions, which all too often led to serious health complications and sometimes even death. All women knew that they could face an impossible choice between controlling their future and their health and breaking the law.”
Sandberg went on to write, “I never thought my mom’s past would be my daughters’ future. I can't believe I'm about to send my three daughters off to college with less credit than I had. The decision of the Supreme Court endangers the health and lives of millions of girls and women across the country.”
A Lean In writer wrote that the new regulation "threatens to undo the progress women have made in the workplace."
“Women will find it harder to fulfill their dream,” she wrote. “And it will disproportionately affect women with the least resources. This is a huge failure. For ourselves, for our daughters, and for each succeeding generation, we must continue to fight. Together we must protect and expand access to abortion.”
The tech giant had previously announced to its employees that it would help cover workers' travel expenses in search of access to abortion.
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"This support is expanding to include assistance with travel expenses for these and other medical services where access to medical care is limited in the employee's home geographic region," Microsoft said in a statement.
Momentive (Survey Monkey)
On the morning of June 24, the technology company informed its employees that it would cover the expenses of employees and dependents for travel for abortion and fertility treatments.
Netflix said the company planned to cover the costs of all employees who were forced to travel to have an abortion.
The sportswear company covers lodging and travel expenses for employees requiring medical care not available nearby.
“No matter where our teammates are on the family planning journey — from contraceptives and abortion coverage to supporting pregnancy and family building through fertility, surrogacy and adoption benefits — we are here to support their decisions,” reads the post. Nike statement.
In a statement posted to Instagram, a spokesperson for the popular dating site said: "The #roevwade decision doesn't mean the fight is over. Reproductive rights are human rights. Act now by calling your representatives and demanding freedom of choice, there is no other way out - you need to fight!”
In addition, OkCupid sent out an in-app notification to every user in the 26 states that are likely to ban abortion, encouraging people to call their elected officials.
CEO Bob Bakish and Chief Human Resources Officer Nancy Phillips on June 24 reaffirmed the company's stance towards staff, stating that "Protecting reproductive health through company-sponsored health insurance, including birth control coverage, elective abortion treatment, miscarriage treatment, and some related travel expenses if covered medical services, such as abortion, are prohibited in your area,” the memo reads.
Alexis Ohanian, founder of the social media platform Reddit, took to Twitter to assess what was happening.
There it is. I'm so sorry to see it. Dems, here is your mandate going into midterms. https://t.co/BWhLPRQqtC
— AlexisOhanian7️⃣7️⃣6️⃣ (@alexisohanian) June 24, 2022
A spokesperson for the social media giant said the company will provide travel and living allowance of up to $10 for an employee or family member covered by their insurance who wants to have an abortion.
“Snap remains committed to maintaining access to important medical benefits for our team members and is working closely with our benefit providers to cover travel for team members who need treatment, including abortions that are illegal in their state of residence. Our goal is to ensure that all members of the Snap team can access the healthcare they need, when they need it," the spokesperson said.
“Like many of you, I am deeply concerned about the draft Supreme Court ruling on the constitutional right to abortion, which was first established in Roe v. Wade,” Starbucks executive vice president Sarah Kelly wrote in a letter to Starbucks employees. “No matter what the Supreme Court decides, we will always ensure that our partners have access to quality health care.”
Weeks before the Supreme Court's decision, the Sundance Film Festival and the Sundance Institute announced that they had "expanded their medical benefits to include travel expenses." His annual festival is planned to be held in Utah, where abortion is expected to be banned.
In May, representatives for the Texas automaker said the company would pay for employees traveling for "medical care."
While the ridesharing company already covers travel expenses for accessing medical care, an Uber spokesperson said Uber will provide refunds to drivers who could be sued for being taken to an abortion clinic.
"We are aware of the Supreme Court's opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization," a UnitedHealth Group spokesman said. – We respect and understand that there are different opinions on this important issue. This decision will impact our employees and the people we serve differently depending on where they live, what type of insurance coverage they have, and what specific plans they have.”
A spokesperson said the company's teams were "actively preparing for this decision."
"We are currently reviewing the court's conclusion and will provide additional information as soon as possible," the spokesman said. "We remain committed to helping members and patients access their plan's benefits and services."
Walgreens said the company remains committed to "the best possible support for the health and well-being of our patients and customers."
“We are prepared to comply with new federal and state laws and regulations and will update any protocols in certain states as a result of this Supreme Court decision,” the company said.
Walmart officials have previously declined to comment on the company's history of donations to anti-abortion politicians in states with so-called trigger laws.
Restaurant review platform Yelp said it will reimburse employees who need to travel out of state for abortions. The Yelp executive also said the company has been contacted by executives from other firms interested in installing a similar benefit.
In a statement, Jeremy Stoppelman, co-founder and CEO of tech company Yelp, reacted to the news.
“This ruling endangers women's health, deprives them of their human rights, and threatens to undo the progress we've made towards gender equality in the workplace since Rowe's time,” he said. "Business leaders must step up to support the health and safety of their employees by speaking out against the wave of abortion bans that this decision will cause and call on Congress to codify Rowe into law."
YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki previously spoke about the impending court ruling in May. According to Fortune, the CEO of the technology sector said, "I believe that reproductive rights are human rights, and the repeal of the law and the rights that we have had for almost 50 years will be a big disaster for women."
In a statement, a spokesperson said the real estate company supports its employees' rights to choose their own health care. Effective June 1, they have updated the health plan to reimburse up to $7 each time travel is required to access health care, including reproductive or gender-affirming care. They will continue to ensure that coverage includes safe access to reproductive health services.
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