OLYMPIA — Washington Senate Democrats are taking bold action to ensure the right to reproductive healthcare and safe abortion services.
Every day this week, members of the Senate Democratic Caucus introduced legislation aimed at further protecting this human right and not only prioritize patients, but protect providers.
“Access to reproductive healthcare and services is a top priority for Senate Democrats this year. As chair of the Senate Health & Long-Term Care Committee, it is imperative to me that we continue to protect the right to safe, quality reproductive health care for all. We are working to ensure that everyone can make the choices that are best and right for them,” Sen. Annette Cleveland (D-Vancouver) said.
Learn more below:
- SB 5242 seeks to ease the burden of out-of-pocket costs by eliminating cost-sharing for patients seeking abortion care.
- SB 5260 would provide Washington employers that provide reproductive health care benefits with tools for redress against retaliation by states with anti-abortion laws.
- SB 5241, also known as the Keep Our Care Act, would regulate hospital and health system mergers, and preserve community access to comprehensive medical care.
- SB 5351 would strengthen protections for the privacy of health data by blocking websites and apps from collecting and sharing it.
- SB 5400 ensures that healthcare providers can’t be disciplined in our state simply because they provide reproductive or gender affirming care in accordance with Washington state law, regardless of where the patient resides.
Senate Democrats have also introduced Senate Joint Resolution 8202, a proposal to amend the state Constitution to specify that the state cannot interfere with an individual’s reproductive freedom decisions. This includes the right to have an abortion and the right to choose to use contraception.
“Generations have grown up taking the right to reproductive freedom for granted,” said Sen. Karen Keiser (D-Des Moines), chair of the Senate Labor & Commerce Committee. “After the U.S. Supreme Court’s radical decision to take away that freedom, our state has a responsibility to step up and guarantee that every Washingtonian retains the fundamental right to choose when and whether to have children. That requires not only new state statutes but also the backing of clear and specific constitutional rights.”
More legislation is expected to be filed in the coming weeks.