Starbucks to add abortion travel coverage to US health benefits; joins growing list of companies
- The global coffee chain joins Amazon, Microsoft, Tesla and a growing list of companies offering the benefit as some US states impose tighter restrictions
- The issue gained urgency after leaked draft from US Supreme Court showed majority of justices support overturning Roe v Wade decision that legalised abortion
Starbucks says it will now offer employees enrolled in its healthcare plan reimbursement for eligible travel expenses when accessing abortion or gender-affirming procedures, when those services are not available within 100 miles (160 miles) of a worker’s home.
The global coffee chain, based in Seattle, said on Monday that the benefit will also be available to dependents of employees enrolled in its healthcare coverage.
Starbucks joins Amazon, Microsoft and a growing list of other companies to offer the benefit as some US states impose tighter restrictions on abortion.
The issue gained urgency after a leaked draft opinion from the US Supreme Court showed that a conservative majority of justices supported overturning the Roe v Wade decision that legalised abortion nationwide.
“Like many of you, I’m deeply concerned by the draft Supreme Court opinion related to the constitutional right to abortion that was first established by Roe v. Wade,” Sara Kelly, Starbucks acting executive vice-president of partner resources wrote.
“Regardless of what the Supreme Court ends up deciding, we will always ensure our partners have access to quality healthcare.”
Last year more than 60 companies signed a letter in response to a Texas law banning abortions after roughly six weeks of pregnancy, forcing some women to travel out-of-state to access the procedure.
Among others, jeans maker Levi Strauss, the online reviews site Yelp, banking giant Citigroup and ride-hailing company Lyft pledged to cover travel costs for employees who have to travel long distances to access an abortion.
Earlier this month Tesla said it would cover travel costs for employees seeking out-of-state abortions.