More Than a Dozen Companies Set To Reimburse Abortion Travel Expenses

Citigroup, Yelp, Amazon, and others have responded

At least 13 companies have responded to a leaked Supreme Court draft decision that would overturn Roe versus Wade by announcing that they would pay travel expenses for abortions and, in some cases, other non-life-threatening medical expenses. More companies are expected to join in now that 31 states have introduced abortion bans this year, according to an analysis by the Guttmacher Institute.

Although corporate America is not fond of taking sides on the topic of abortion, these moves demonstrate that companies want to attract and retain talented employees in a country where 50% of registered voters believe Roe should not be overturned and just 28% believe it should (22% don't know or have no opinion) according to a May 3, Morning Consult/Politico survey.

Key Takeaways

  • More than a dozen companies are offering to pay travel expenses for abortions following the recent leaked Supreme Court draft decision that would overturn Roe.
  • A recent Morning Consult/Politico survey taken after the leak reveals that 50% of registered voters believe Roe should not be overturned with just 28% say it should.
  • A final ruling by SCOTUS on Roe versus Wade is expected by the end of June.
  • Some companies, such as Amazon, say they will pay travel expenses for abortions and other non-life-threatening medical treatments.
  • A bill introduced by Florida Senator Marco Rubio would deny employers a business expense deduction for reimbursing employees for the cost of child gender transition procedures or travel to obtain an abortion.

Companies Offering To Pay Abortion Travel Expenses

Companies that are planning to pay travel expenses for abortions and other non-life-threatening medical treatments number more than a dozen and include such high-profile names as Amazon, Apple, and Citigroup.

It's worth noting that not all companies are eager to confirm their plans. In some cases confirmation comes from leaked company memos and company CEO disclosures via Twitter.

Among the companies providing this help are the following:

Amazon.com Inc. is the second-largest private employer in the U.S. The company has informed staff it would pay up to $4,000 in travel expenses annually, beginning Jan. 1, 2023, retroactively in states where the procedure is not available within 100 miles of an employee's home, according to Reuters.

A bill introduced in the Senate by Sen. Marco Rubio (R, Fl) called the ‘No Tax Breaks for Radical Corporate Activism Act' would deny employers a business expense deduction for reimbursing employees for the cost of child gender transition procedures or travel to obtain an abortion.

Amalgamated Bank, the largest union-owned bank in the U.S. issued a statement in which it said it would cover travel expenses “for employees and their dependents who need to travel out of state to access reproductive health care.” Benefits include airfare, gasoline costs, hotel fees, and meal expenses, as well as up to five days of childcare expenses.

Apple told The Wall Street Journal that its health-insurance policies cover abortion services and travel fees if needed. The company is expanding in Austin, Texas, building a new $1 billion, 3-million-square-foot campus.

Bumble announced via Twitter a relief fund for women and others across the gender spectrum who have been affected by SB-8 in Texas, which bans abortion after six weeks. Relief includes travel for abortion services if required.

Citigroup, in its 2022 proxy statement, said that “in response to changes in reproductive healthcare laws in certain states, in certain states in the U.S., beginning in 2022 we provide travel benefits to facilitate access to adequate resources."

DoorDash told Forbes it would start covering certain travel-related expenses for employees and their dependents who are enrolled in the DoorDash health plan and have to travel out of state for abortion-related care.

Levi Strauss & Co., in a May 4 statement, said employees on its current benefits plan are “eligible for reimbursement for healthcare-related travel expenses for services not available in their home state, including those related to reproductive health care and abortion.”

Lyft in April announced via Twitter that it would expand benefits to include travel costs for U.S. employees enrolled in the company's health plan who need to travel more than 100 miles to access abortion services. This followed a September announcement that the company would protect drivers against the Texas "bounty" that was part of SB 8 according to the Verge.

Match Group. In an internal memo released in the fall of 2021 and circulated on Twitter, CEO Shar Dubey said she had set up a fund for workers affected by SB 8 in Texas.

Salesforce told employees in September, via a Slack message and later confirmed via Twitter, that the company would help Texas employees relocate if they wanted to leave the state. According to CNBC, the Slack message said, “If you have concerns about access to reproductive healthcare in your state, Salesforce will help relocate you and members of your immediate family."

Tesla's 2021 Impact Report contains a brief reference to an expansion of its Safety Net program that says it includes, "travel and lodging support for those who may need to seek healthcare services that are unavailable in their home state."

United Talent Agency. In a memo to employees that was subsequently reprinted by Variety, UTA said it would reimburse travel expenses “related to receiving women’s reproductive health services that are not accessible in their state of residence.”

Yelp, which already included abortion care as part of its health insurance plan, has added travel benefits for U.S. employees and dependents who need to travel out of state for access, according to The New York Times.

Article Sources

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  1. Guttmacher Institute. "2022 State Legislative Sessions: Abortion Bans and Restrictions on Medication Abortion Dominate."

  2. MorningConsult. "The Supreme Court Appears Likely to Strike Down Roe v. Wade. Voters Are Most Likely to Say It Should Be Upheld."

  3. Reuters. "Amazon to reimburse U.S. employees who travel for abortions, other treatments."

  4. Rubio.Senate.gov. "No Tax Breaks for Radical Corporate Activism Act."

  5. Amalgamated Bank. "Amalgamated Bank Funds Full Reproductive Health Care Access For Employees and Communities."

  6. Wall Street Journal. "Yelp Joins Apple, Citigroup, Other Companies Covering Travel Costs for Abortions."

  7. Twitter. "Bumble Has Created a Relief Fund."

  8. Citigroup. "Citigroup Inc. 2022 Notice of Annual Meeting and Proxy Statement." Page 20.

  9. Forbes. "These Are The U.S. Companies Offering Abortion-Related Benefits."

  10. Levi Strauss. "Protecting Reproductive Rights – A Business Imperative."

  11. The Verge. "Uber and Lyft extend legal fee coverage to drivers sued under Oklahoma’s forthcoming abortion law."

  12. Twitter. "Arielle Pardes. "Tweet from Shar Dubey."

  13. CNBC. "Salesforce offers to relocate employees and their families after Texas abortion law goes into effect."

  14. Twitter. "Marc Benioff."

  15. Tesla. "2021 Impact Report." Page 31.

  16. Variety. "UTA Will Reimburse Employee Travel Expenses for Reproductive Health Services."

  17. New York Times. "Yelp Will Pay for Employees to Travel for Abortion Access."

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