Updated Aug 19, 2022 - Health

These companies are helping employees access abortions

The Walt Disney Company, among the companies that say they will help employees access abortions and cover costs. AP Photo/Richard Drew

Companies across the United States have announced plans to help employees who live in states with abortion restrictions gain access to reproductive health care.

The big picture: After the Supreme Court issued a ruling overturning Roe v. Wade, several companies announced plans to help employees access reproductive health care options if their home state restricts them.

The latest: Walmart said Friday in a memo sent to employees it will expand abortion and travel coverage, CNBC reports.

  • The company said it will cover abortion “when there is a health risk to the mother, rape or incest, ectopic pregnancy, miscarriage or lack of fetal viability."
  • Walmart employees and their families insured through the company will have travel costs covered if they have to travel within 100 miles of their home to access a legal abortion, per CNBC.

Multiple companies have said over the last few months that they would help employees access reproductive health care and pay for travel expenses.

Disney previously told employees that "we recognize the impact of the ruling" and the company will provide access to quality and affordable care for employees and their families, which includes family planning and reproductive care, a Disney spokesperson told Axios.

  • Disney employees who don't have access to care in one area have affordable coverage for receiving similar levels of care in another location," the spokesperson said.

Discord, the instant messaging social platform used by gamers, will offer up to $5,000 per year for full-time employees and their dependents to seek medical care outside of their own local area in order to access the resources they need, a spokesperson tells Axios.

  • "Today’s SCOTUS ruling has taken away the ability for millions of people, including members of our team, to access critical health services," the spokesperson said.

Patagonia said in a statement its U.S. employees on the company's health plan are covered for abortion care.

  • "Caring for employees extends beyond basic health insurance, so we take a more holistic approach to coverage and support overall wellness to which every human has a right," the company said. "That means offering employees the dignity of access to reproductive health care."

Bungie, the Washington State-based video game studio that makes hit online game Destiny and is in the process of being sold to Sony for $3.6 billion, will reimburse employees who need to travel out of state for "essential" care, including abortions.

  • Another studio, Texas-based Certain Affinity, will help pay "reasonable" relocation expenses to employees who want to move out of the state due to its abortion regulations.

Chobani said the company added a new policy in May 2022 that covers transportation, lodging and childcare costs for employees and defendants who need to travel out of state.

  • The policy applies to cancer, gender reassignment care and abortion, the company tells Axios.

Lyft, which previously pledged to cover any legal fees in case their drivers are sued because of Oklahoma's new abortion bill, will expand its legal defense commitment to states that pass similar laws, a Lyft spokesperson told Axios.

  • "No driver should have to ask a rider where they are going and why," the spokesperson said.
  • Lyft's benefits plan includes coverage of elective abortion and reimbursement for travel costs if employees have to travel more than 100 miles for a provider

Ralph Lauren said in a statement to Axios that the company will cover travel costs for employees seeking reproductive healthcare services and other medical care out of state.

  • "At Ralph Lauren, we remain committed to respecting the right to personal choice when making individual healthcare decisions," the company said.

Comcast will pay travel costs for medical services and procedures, including reproductive healthcare, a spokesperson told Axios.

  • The benefit covers up to $4,000 per trip with up to three trips per year. The maximum per year is $10,000, the spokesperson said.

Indeed added a travel reimbursement policy in October 2021 that covers medical procedures outside the state where they live.

Dick's Sporting Goods said it would provide $4,000 in travel reimbursement for employees who live in states where abortion access is restricted.

Conde Nast said it would cover travel and lodging for employees to receive abortions, the New York Times reports.

Zillow said it would reimburse employees up to $7,500 when travel is required for medical procedures, including abortions, per the New York Times.

Warner Bros. told Deadline it will cover transportation expenses for employees and their family members who need to travel to access abortion and reproductive care.

Goldman Sachs told employees the firm will cover costs of reimbursements for women to travel out of state for abortion services and gender-affirming care, Insider reports.

JP Morgan told workers it will pay for employees to travel to other states that allow legal abortions, CNBC reports.

Meta, the parent company of Facebook, said it will reimburse travel expenses for employees who are seeking out-of-state reproductive care, per Reuters.

Reddit said employees could receive a stipend to cover expenses for travel over medical procedures, including abortions, per the New York Times.

Alaska Air Group said it would reimburse travel for employees, too, Reuters reports.

Ulta Beauty said it will pay for employees to travel to states where the procedure is legal, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Wells Fargo said Monday it will reimburse employees and dependents for travel and lodging costs for traveling more than 50 miles for healthcare services, including abortions, Reuters reports.

J.Crew said it was committed to giving equal employees access to health care, a spokesperson told Axios in an email.

Flashback: The move by corporations to help employees cover abortion travel costs kicked off in early May, after a leaked U.S. Supreme Court draft ruling indicated that the court could soon overturn Roe v. Wade.

What will happen immediately in each state now that Roe v. Wade has been overturned
Data: Axios research; Cartogram: Sara Wise and Oriana Gonzalez/Axios

Here are the companies who first announced plans to help employees access abortion services. 

Levi Strauss & Co. said in a statement that employees will be reimbursed for travel expenses for receiving health care services outside their state, including abortions.

  • "We know this is a fraught conversation; it's not something we enter into lightly. But women make up 58% of our global workforce, and in recent years, numerous employees have expressed to leadership their growing alarm over the rollback of all forms of reproductive care," the company said.
  • "Our position on this is in keeping with our efforts to support employees and family members at all stages of their lives."

Microsoft said it would help cover workers' travel expenses for abortions and gender-affirming care, per Bloomberg.

  • The company said it would “support employees and their enrolled dependents in accessing critical health care -- which already includes services like abortion and gender-affirming care -- regardless of where they live across the U.S."
  • “This support is being extended to include travel expense assistance for these and other medical services where access to care is limited in availability in an employee’s home geographic region.”

Apple said it would cover medical expenses for employees in Texas who have to travel outside of the state for abortions, per the Washington Post.

Tesla said it would cover travel costs for employees seeking abortions outside of their state, per the AP.

  • The company's 2021 “Impact Report” released Friday said the company's Safety Net program will now include “travel and lodging support for those who may need to seek healthcare services that are unavailable in their home state.”
  • Tesla's headquarters is located in Texas which has one of the most restrictive abortion laws in the country.

Salesforce said it is willing to relocate workers from Texas due to the state's new abortion law, CNBC reports.

Amazon said it would cover up to $4,000 in travel for United States workers who are seeking medical treatments, including abortions, per Reuters.

Uber and Lyft both pledged to cover any legal fees in case their drivers are sued because of Oklahoma's new abortion bill, which allows citizens to sue anyone they suspect has helped someone receive an abortion.

Citigroup will cover travel expenses for employees who are forced to travel outside their state for abortions, MarketWatch reports.

  • "In response to changes in reproductive health care laws in certain states in the U.S., beginning in 2022 we provide travel benefits to facilitate access to adequate resources," the company said in a filing back in April.

Yelp said it would offer assistance through the company's insurance plan for employees and their dependents if they need to travel out of state for an abortion, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Starbucks said that it will cover the travel expenses of employees seeking abortion or gender-affirming care.

Mastercard said it will cover travel expenses for employees who must travel out of state to receive abortions, with the new policy going into effect June 1, per Bloomberg.

Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.

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