By Jeanine Grimes
SACRAMENTO, CA – Although the U.S. Supreme Court last week overturned Roe v. Wade, CA Gov. Gavin Newsom agreed June 24 that the western states of Oregon, California and Washington are committed to a multi-state plan to protect those seeking an abortion from inside or outside the three states.
The states will continue to provide a safe environment for individuals who seek reproductive health care services such as contraceptives and abortions.
This multi-state commitment plan ensures that individuals will be able to exercise their reproductive rights without fearing other states might proceed with their bans onto the western states.
The states call out the Supreme Court anti-abortion decision as “unprecedented” and “strips away a constitutional right that has been placed for half a century, leaving abortion regulations up to the states.” When the abortion regulation is left to the states, the western states automatically set forth a plan to protect reproductive rights.
The governors of the three states explicitly emphasize the significant impact of the decision, noting, “They [Supreme Court] want to strip women from their liberty and replace [abortion] with mandated birth because it was not deeply rooted in history.”
In the more progressive perspective, the western states firmly believe Republicans intend to return American society back to a time where women lacked equal rights and liberties.
Gov. Newson said, “This is not the America we know, and not the California way.”
The governor of Oregon, Kate Brown, reiterated the “disgraceful Supreme Court decision” puts many lives at risk and disproportionately affects women. Brown said women are not alone and the fight is not over yet.
Nevertheless, the Republicans in Washington continue to pursue laws that prevent the right to abortion and access to reproductive care.
The Governor of Washington, Jay Inslee, asserts that “the right of choice should not depend on which party holds the majority,” and that his state would continue to protect every person that comes to the state to seek abortion care and will “fight like hell” to restore access for all patients across the nation.
Each governor has established legislation in order to expand access to reproductive rights:
In California, Gov. Newsom proposed a $125 million Reproductive Health Package to expand access for women and help other women from other states if they come to California for help.
California lawmakers also passed a constitutional amendment that proclaims the right to abortion under the state constitution. In addition, Governor Newsom has passed a law that eliminates the copays for the abortion care services.
In Oregon, Gov. Brown signed the Reproductive Health Equity Act in 2017, which was one of the first of its kind bill to expand access to reproductive health services and established the right to an abortion into state law.
Gov. Brown managed to invest $15 million into community organizations to expand access to abortion throughout the state of Oregon and various communities.
In Washington, Gov. Inslee signed into law the Reproductive Parity Act that requires health plans to include maternity services and abortion and contraception coverage.