By MADISON HIRNEISEN
THE CENTER SQUARE STAFF REPORTER
(The Center Square) — Should the Supreme Court overturn Roe v. Wade, reproductive rights advocates say California should fund travel expenses like gas, lodging, transportation and child care for in-state and out-of-state patients seeking an abortion.
The California Future of Abortion Council delivered 45 recommendations to the California legislature on Wednesday, calling on the state to reduce barriers and expand access to abortion for both in-state and out-of-state patients. The council was convened by Gov. Gavin Newsom in September shortly after Texas Gov. Gregg Abbott signed one of the nation’s strictest abortion laws that banned the procedure after six weeks.
According to the Guttmacher Institute, California would become the closest out-of-state abortion provider for 1.4 million patients – a nearly 3,000% increase – if Roe v. Wade is overturned.
The majority of these patients are likely to come from Arizona – California’s only neighboring state that is likely to ban abortion pending the Supreme Court ruling. The Guttmacher Institute expects Washington and Nevada to see thousands more patients seeking abortion as well.
While California does not collect or report abortion statistics, the Guttmacher Institute reported that 132,680 abortions were provided in California in 2017. As of 2017, 40% of the state’s counties did not have any clinics that provided abortions, and 3% of women lived in these areas, according to the institute.
Madison Hirneisen covers California for The Center Square.