Cincinnati City Council expands health care plan to include elective abortions

Cincinnati City Council expands health care plan to include elective abortions
Published: Jun. 29, 2022 at 3:54 PM EDT
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CINCINNATI (WXIX) - Cincinnati City Council passed an ordinance on Wednesday that will allow the city’s health care plan to give employees access to abortion care.

The vote to approve was unanimous.

On Monday, Cincinnati Mayor Aftab Pureval stated that the city would repeal the 2001 ordinance which restricted the city’s ability to cover elective abortions in its health care plan.

Now passed, the city’s health care plan will be changed to include abortion-related health services to the extent that’s allowed under the law.

In addition to the change, there will be a travel reimbursement policy similar to the one Kroger recently announced.

“This policy will provide for the reimbursement of employee costs associated with travel to receive healthcare services that are not available within 150 miles and not covered under the City’s health plan,” Pureval said.

The mayor says that he wants to decriminalize abortion. He stated that the administration has within 30 days to provide a report that dives into decriminalizing abortion in the city.

“This item is a crucial and overdue step for supporting our employees and their families, but it is only one part of our actions,” Mayor Pureval said. “I am extremely proud of all the members of this City government for coming together to fight back against the shameful decisions of the Supreme Court and the Ohio State Legislature. Will we not stop defending the rights of the women of our City.”

The SCOTUS ruling on Roe v. Wade case leaves it in the hands of state governments to determine their own abortion laws.

After the ruling, Attorney General Dave Yost announced that the 2019 heartbeat bill is now a law, meaning that abortion is banned after the first heartbeat is detected. This could be as early as six weeks into a pregnancy.

“Our Supreme Court, Congress, and State legislature have failed us. Local officials must do whatever we can to protect the women of our communities. It is not my job to make it easier for the state legislature and governor to drag women back to the 50′s and strip their rights. It is my job to make that harder. And with today’s announcements we are fighting back,”, Mayor Pureval said Monday.

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