California Continues Reproductive Freedom Leadership; Builds on Recommendations to Protect and Expand Access to Abortion
The California Future of Abortion Council (CA FAB Council) steering committee, comprised of ACCESS REPRODUCTIVE JUSTICE, Black Women for Wellness Action Project (BWWAP), California Coalition for Reproductive Freedom, California Latinas for Reproductive Justice (CLRJ), Essential Access Health, NARAL Pro-Choice California, National Health Law Program, Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California, and TEACH (Training in Early Abortion for Comprehensive Healthcare) announces its support for a 17-bill legislative package introduced this session by the California Legislative Women's Caucus, which builds upon the recommendations put forth by the CA FAB Council.
Last year, California policymakers passed historic legislation, based on the recommendations of the CA FAB Council, to ensure that all people in California, and those who are forced to travel here for care due to harmful bans and restrictions in their home states, have access to safe and affordable abortion care. As a result, California is better equipped to handle the increased demand for these services, as more patients are forced to seek care here due to restrictions in their home states.
However, California cannot rest on its laurels. As the devastating impacts of the Dobbs decision continue to become increasingly clear, the CA FAB Council reconvened in the fall and winter of 2022 to review California’s progress in implementing its 2021 recommendations. The group identified new and ongoing barriers to abortion services, and recommended additional policy recommendations to support equitable and affordable access to abortion care. This new legislative package is more critical than ever.
We call on California's leadership to continue leading the nation in advancing reproductive freedom by expanding the state's abortion provider network, reducing barriers to care, and protecting abortion patients and providers in this shifting landscape by passing the following package of bills this session.
The legislative package includes the following 17 bills based on Future of Abortion Council recommendations:
SB 36 (Skinner) Strengthens safe haven protections for abortion and gender-affirming care by prohibiting bail agents or bounty hunters from apprehending people in California and protecting access to public benefits.
SB 345 (Skinner) Improves protections for providers who provide abortion and gender-affirming care and services.
SB 385 (Atkins) Extends many of the updated training rules for nurse practitioners and certified nurse-midwives to provide first trimester abortion care (from SB 1375 last year) to physician assistants.
SB 487 (Atkins) Provides additional safeguards for California abortion providers and other entities and individuals that serve and support abortion patients that reside in states with hostile abortion laws.
AB 90 (Petrie-Norris) Improves access to long-acting reversible contraceptives (LARCs) for those seeking abortion services.
AB 254 (Bauer-Kahan) Provides privacy protections for digital data related to patients accessing abortion services in California.
AB 352 (Bauer-Kahan) Enhances privacy protections for medical records related to abortion, pregnancy loss, and other sensitive services through electronic health record sharing and health information exchanges.
AB 571 (Petrie-Norris) Ensures that licensed medical providers have access to professional liability insurance coverage without discrimination for providing abortion care, contraception, and gender affirming care.
AB 576 (Weber) Aligns Medi-Cal coverage of medication abortion with evidence-based clinical guidelines.
AB 598 (Wicks) Requires school districts to participate in the California Healthy Kids Survey (CHKS) and include a module on sexual and reproductive health care as one of the core survey modules.
AB 710 (Schiavo) will launch a public information campaign to provide women with accurate information regarding access to abortion care at crisis pregnancy centers.
AB 793 (Bonta) Supports safe access to reproductive and gender-affirming care in the digital age by protecting people from unconstitutional searches of their data.
AB 1194 (Carrillo) Ensures that businesses can’t use exemptions under the Consumer Privacy Rights Act (CPRA) to share information about “a consumer accessing, procuring, or searching for services regarding contraception, pregnancy care, and perinatal care, including, but not limited to, abortion services.”
AB 1432 (Carrillo)- Requires every health insurance policy or certificate that is issued, or delivered to a resident of California, regardless of the situs of the contract, to comply with California laws that require coverage of abortion services and gender affirming Care.
AB 1481 (Boerner-Horvath) Clarifies Presumptive Eligibility for Pregnant Individuals (currently called PE4PW) coverage policies and ensures PE4PW patients can access abortion services regardless of other health coverage.
AB 1646 (Nguyen) Facilitates guest rotations in medical residency programs in California.
AB 1707 (Pacheco) Builds on existing law to protect reproductive health care providers from adverse actions based on another state’s hostile law.
Senate President pro Tempore Toni G. Atkins
“This is a comprehensive bill package that will help California stay ahead of the curve and continue to withstand assaults at the national level on reproductive care. Last year, we enacted more than a dozen bills and budget funding to expand and protect reproductive rights and services in our state. This year, we are building on that momentum, from legislation that further reduces barriers to care to my own bill, SB 385, which aims to expand training for physician assistants to provide first trimester abortions, and SB 487, which seeks to bolster safeguards for California abortion providers serving people from other states. I’m deeply appreciative to the Legislative Women’s Caucus and the Future of Abortion Council for our continued partnership – together, we are making sure that equitable and affordable access to reproductive care is a reality in California.” - Senate President pro Tempore Toni G. Atkins (D-San Diego)
ACCESS REPRODUCTIVE JUSTICE
“Following the Dobbs decision, California has seen an influx of people being forced to travel into the state for abortion care. This forced travel creates financial and logistical hurdles designed to push care further and further out of reach for people. In California, we’ve done remarkable work to increase access, however we must be honest that barriers have existed long before 2022. We must continue making strides towards abolishing barriers to care and increasing access for people living in and traveling to California. We are so proud of the work that we have done along with our FAB Council partners and legislative supporters. This is one more step towards making reproductive freedom a reality for all.” - Jessica Pinckney, Executive Director ACCESS REPRODUCTIVE JUSTICE
Black Women for Wellness Action Project (BWWAP)
“As we witness the unrelenting and downright cruel efforts to infringe on our right to bodily autonomy and basic human dignity through harmful bans and restrictions on basic healthcare across the country, we are proud of California's steadfast commitment to strengthening protections of our basic human rights. Building on the historic wins for reproductive freedom from last year, the Legislative Women's Caucus has introduced a package of solutions that are not only responsive to the current attacks, but also reimagines reproductive healthcare. Black Women for Wellness Action Project, as proud steering committee members, are proud to join the LWC and our state leaders in the fight to secure reproductive justice for all.” - Onyemma Obiekea, Policy Director, Black Women for Wellness Action Project
California Coalition for Reproductive Freedom
"Coalition work has always been key to the liberation of all peoples and we have seen through the work we have done with the Future of Abortion Council. The breadth of work our organizations specialize in allows us to take an intersectional approach to support California in becoming a reproductive freedom state while encompassing the fullness of Reproductive Justice." - Cynthia Gutierrez, California Coalition for Reproductive Freedom
California Latinas for Reproductive Justice
“California Latinas for Reproductive Justice (CLRJ) is proud to be working alongside our partners in the California Future of Abortion Council Steering Committee and the Legislative Women’s Caucus to continue building a future where the human right to bodily autonomy for all people is recognized, supported, and respected. This year’s package of bills reflect a collective effort to ensure our communities are able to access critical reproductive healthcare we all need without barriers and free from reproductive oppression.” - Lorena Garcia Zermeno, Director of Policy, California Latinas for Reproductive Justice
Essential Access Health
“California has led the nation with robust, bold, and innovative policies that will expand and protect access to essential health services for millions seeking time-sensitive abortion care in our state, and serve as models for other safe states to adapt - but our work isn’t done. Abortion bans and restrictions are devastating and life-threatening – and disproportionately harm people with lower-incomes, BIPOC communities, youth, and individuals living in rural regions. For every year they remain in place, we have an obligation to develop and invest in new solutions that have a real impact on people’s health, lives, and economic security, and serve as a beacon of hope for a future that includes greater reproductive equity and justice for all.” - Amy Moy, Co-CEO, Essential Access Health
NARAL Pro-Choice California
“California has remained a steadfast leader in the fight to protect and advance reproductive freedom amidst the national abortion crisis. This bill package is another chance to make our state’s values clear: California will continue to provide abortion access to all who need it regardless of where they call home. NARAL Pro-Choice California and our more than 371,000 members look forward to continuing to work alongside our partners on the Future of Abortion Council Steering Committee to ensure these bills become law and California continues to lead the way as a Reproductive Freedom state.” - NARAL Pro-Choice California Director Shannon Olivieri Hovis
National Health Law Program
“Since the devastating decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, California has taken decisive action to protect and expand equitable access to abortion -- but the work isn't finished. Building on the progress of the last year, this bill package is another vital step toward ensuring that abortion is accessible, affordable, and supported for all Californians and anyone who comes to our state seeking abortion care. We have seen states across the country step up and take action and this bill package is essential to securing California’s status as a reproductive freedom state. The National Health Law Program is proud to support this bill package and work alongside our partners in the California Future of Abortion Council Steering Committee and Legislative Women’s Caucus.” - Cat Duffy, PhD, Policy Analyst at the National Health Law Program
Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California
“In the wake of the Dobbs decision, abortion patients, providers, and those who support and assist them are facing additional barriers and shifting landscapes. Continued action to protect reproductive freedom and bodily autonomy is crucial as we deal with the impacts of a post-Dobbs reality, and what’s more, extremists across the country will stop at nothing to restrict or outright ban access to abortion, birth control, gender-affirming care, and other essential forms of health care. Planned Parenthood,the Legislative Women’s Caucus, legislative supporters, and our partners cannot stop until we achieve reproductive freedom for all.”- Jodi Hicks, President and CEO, Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California
TEACH (Training in Early Abortion for Comprehensive Healthcare)
“Last year, California took bold steps to establish ourselves as national leaders in Reproductive Freedom, working together to pass a historic legislative package that centered those most in need of equitable access to abortion. In California, we know what we can accomplish together–working hand-in-hand with the Governor, the legislature, and our CA Future of Abortion Council allies. TEACH (Training in Early Abortion for Comprehensive Healthcare) is committed to continuing this critical work, advancing a legislative package that protects patients and providers, meanwhile doing the hard work of expanding access to reproductive health, rights, and justice.” - Flor Hunt, Executive Director TEACH
Andy DiAntonio, National Health Law Program
Jen Wonnacott, Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California