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Disney offers ‘travel benefit’ for employees seeking an abortion

Workers at Walt Disney World and other Florida parks will be offered resources to travel for “pregnancy-related decisions.”
In this Jan. 9, 2019, photo, guests watch a show near a statue of Walt Disney and Micky Mouse in front of the Cinderella Castle at the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World in Lake Buena Vista. The Walt Disney Co. said Friday that in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, employees who may need to travel to receive an abortion will receive a "travel benefit" designed to reimburse some or all of their expenses.
In this Jan. 9, 2019, photo, guests watch a show near a statue of Walt Disney and Micky Mouse in front of the Cinderella Castle at the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World in Lake Buena Vista. The Walt Disney Co. said Friday that in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, employees who may need to travel to receive an abortion will receive a "travel benefit" designed to reimburse some or all of their expenses. [ JOHN RAOUX | AP ]
Published Jun. 24|Updated Jun. 24

The Walt Disney Co., which employs some 80,000 people at its theme parks and other operations in Florida, said it will offer employees a “travel benefit” to cover costs related to seeking an abortion.

After the Supreme Court announced its ruling to overturn Roe v. Wade, ending constitutional protections for abortion, a company spokesperson said Disney will help employees obtain whatever medical care they seek.

In a statement emailed to the Tampa Bay Times, the company said employees who are “unable to access care in one location” will have “affordable coverage for receiving similar levels of care in another location.” That includes “pregnancy-related decisions.” The company did not say whether the “travel benefit” it would offer would be a full or partial reimbursement.

Related: Florida reacts to Roe v. Wade overturn by Supreme Court

“We have communicated directly with our employees today that we recognize the impact of the ruling and that we remain committed to providing comprehensive access to quality and affordable care for all of our employees, cast members and their families, including family planning and reproductive care, no matter where they live,” the statement read.

The Supreme Court decision allows 13 states to immediately ban abortion, and more could follow suit. In Florida, a ban on most abortions after 15 weeks will go into effect on July 1.

Disney has been at loggerheads with the state in recent months over its opposition to Gov. Ron DeSantis’ Parental Rights in Education legislation, often referred to as the “don’t say gay” bill. Disney suspended political donations following the controversy surrounding the bill, which prompted the state to review and revoke the company’s special tax district status for the area around its parks, known as the Reedy Creek Improvement District.

In a statement Friday, DeSantis said he would “work to expand pro-life protections” in Florida.

Related: Florida special tax districts like Disney's Reedy Creek, explained
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