A new survey reveals that more than one-third of U.S. employers currently offer travel and lodging benefits to employees seeking abortions in a different state.
According to Willis Towers Watson, a human resources consulting firm, 35% of American companies are either partially or fully financing their workers' elective or medically critical abortions; and an additional 16% are pondering similar enticements to employees — either current or prospective.
On June 24, the Supreme Court ruled on Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization (by a 6-3 vote) and overturned the landmark Roe v. Wade case (by a 5-4 decision), which had made abortion legal in America for 49 years.
In the aftermath, however, states have been empowered to make their own determinations with abortion — whether it's banned completely, prohibited after 15 weeks, disallowed after 24 weeks, or no restrictions whatsoever.
"Employers are concerned about what the changing regulations mean for their talent acquisition and their workforce overall," said Jeff Levin-Scherz, a managing director for WTW, according to Axios.
Right now, 26 states either have or will likely enact pre-Roe or "trigger" laws, regarding abortion, accounting for 54.1% of the 48 contiguous states in America.
It's worth noting: For the Willis Towers Watson survey, only 28% of U.S.-based companies don't plan on offering at least partial benefits for women employees pursuing abortion services out-of-state.
According to TheWeek.com, "not all women work for companies that provide travel reimbursement for out-of-state abortions." And Emily Stewart, a writer for Vox, noted to TheWeek.com that if abortion travel "is covered through the employer's health plan, workers who aren't on the health plan — like part-time employees or contractors — wouldn't be covered."
Citing a Newsmax story from Aug. 3, the National Abortion Federation reported that, from June 24 to July 25, the hotline-awareness group "paid for 76 hotel rooms and booked 52 trips by plane or bus for women to obtain an abortion."
That's a significant rise from the NAF's 2021 figures, when abortion-related monies were earmarked for only five hotel stays and one plane or bus trip.
According to Axios, a whopping 97% of self-insured plans, and 98% of traditional fully insured plans already cover medically essential abortions, in states where it's permissible.
Also, 78% of self-insured plans, and 91% of traditional fully insured plans are committed to covering elective abortions in applicable states.
Levin-Scherz was seemingly taken aback by the above statistics, reports Axios.
"[The levels were] not what I expected," said Levin-Scherz.
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