Amazon announced Monday that it would cover up to $4,000 in travel expenses to employees seeking non-life-threatening medical treatments, including abortions, joining a growing list of corporations offering their employees abortion coverage.
The policy, which is effective Jan. 1, is retroactive and it applies to “treatment” that is not available within 100 miles of the employee’s home or if virtual care is not possible.
Abortion is included among the treatments Amazon has promised to reimburse, alongside cardiology, cellular gene therapies and substance abuse disorder services. The company also provides up to $10,000 in annual travel reimbursements for life-threatening issues.
Amazon described the company policy details in a message obtained by Reuters. The new plan is open to U.S. employees or covered dependents enrolled in Aetna or Premera health plans. The announcement of the new policy comes just as Amazon announced that it would no longer offer paid leave to employees diagnosed with COVID-19, and instead offer five days of excused unpaid leave.
National Right to Life Committee President Carol Tobias told The Christian Post that she found Amazon’s announcement that it will pay for employees’ abortion-related travel expenses “disappointing.”
“I think it means there’s a large company that would rather kill their employees’ children than have to cover maternity expenses and maternity leave,” she said. “And, you know, moms can apparently be a financial drag on the corporation. At least that’s what they seem to be saying.”
“I look at this as a cost-saving measure for the company, which really degrades motherhood. It totally ignores the humanity of the unborn child.”
Tobias believes the corporation’s announcement is in response to states that are enacting abortion restrictions and engaging in “pro-life efforts to protect unborn children.” This may include states poised to implement laws that would reduce or eliminate abortion if the U.S.Supreme Court ever struck down Roe v. Wade, the 1973 decision that legalized abortion nationwide. Such states include Oklahoma and Alabama.
The U.S. Supreme Court is also expected to rule in the coming months on the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, a decision that could alter the country’s abortion laws. At the center of the matter is the constitutionality of Mississippi’s 2018 Gestational Age Act, which banned most abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy.
A ruling in favor of Mississippi would chip away at the precedent set by Roe. A leaked draft opinion in the case suggests that a majority of justices are primed to decide that Roe must be overruled.