State Watch

California clinics, lawmakers reveal plan to be abortion sanctuary

California lawmakers and state clinics unveiled a plan Wednesday to make the state a “sanctuary” for those seeking abortions, The Associated Press reported

The new initiative comes as 12 U.S. states are poised to outlaw abortions within their borders if the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade next year. 

The California Future of Abortion Council released a report that lists up to 45 recommendations for the state to consider if Roe v Wade is overturned, allowing states to restrict abortions before “viability,” which is usually around 24 weeks into pregnancy. 

The report recommends public funding for travel expenses for patients seeking abortion, as well as reimbursing abortion providers for services for those who can’t afford to pay. 

State Sen. Toni Atkins (D), who attended multiple council meetings, helped draft the recommendations for the council, according to The AP. 

California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D), who created the council, told the newswire in an interview that the state will be a sanctuary for those seeking an abortion. 

“We’ll be a sanctuary,” Newsom said. “We are looking at ways to support that inevitability and looking at ways to expand our protections”. 

Newsom added some of the report’s details that will be included in his budget proposal for next month, The AP reported. 

Abortion opponents in the state are also preparing for the potential surge of patients from other states to seek procedures, hoping to convince them not to do it. 

California Family Council president and CEO Jonathan Keller said many pregnancy centers in the state are located near abortion clinics in an attempt to entice people to seek counseling before undergoing abortions, adding those centers will expand their staff if California gets an increase of patients, The AP noted.  

“Even if we are not facing any immediate legislative opportunities or legislative victories, it’s a reminder that the work of changing hearts and minds and also providing real support and resources to women facing unplanned pregnancies — that work will always continue,” Keller said.

“In many ways, that work is going to be even more important, both in light of Supreme Court’s decision and in light of whatever Sacramento decides they are going to do in response,” Keller added, per the AP.

Tags abortion access abortion rights abortion sanctuary California Dobbs v. Jackson Gavin Newsom Roe v. Wade sacremento

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