Internet retail giant Amazon will reimburse employees up to $4,000 (£3,202) in travel costs if they require medical treatment, including an abortion.
The decision makes Amazon the latest company, after Citigroup and Yelp, to respond to Republican state laws restricting access to abortion.
Reuters news agency said Amazon will help employees who are forced to travel to receive non-dangerous medical treatment.
The benefit, effective January 1, applies retroactively if there is no activity within 100 miles of the employee’s home and if virtual care is not available.
Open to all employees
It is open to U.S. employees and insured dependents enrolled in Premera or Aetna health plans, regardless of whether they work in a corporate office or a warehouse.
This reimbursement is not specific to abortion and also applies to other treatments, such as cardiovascular, gene therapy, and substance abuse disorder services.
Separately, Amazon offers an annual travel reimbursement of up to $10,000 (£8,100) for life-threatening issues.
The move shows that companies are looking to attract and retain talent in positions that remain critical to their operations, despite regulatory changes that affect employee well-being.
However, the announcement also comes a day after Amazon stopped providing paid time off to US employees diagnosed with COVID-19, instead giving them five days of unpaid leave.
Restrictive abortion laws sweep across the US
America. The Supreme Court will rule at the end of June in a case that will give its conservative majority a chance restore the right to abortion or even overturn Roe v Wade’s landmark 1973 ruling.
About two dozen states including Oklahoma and Alabama already have laws in place to restrict access to abortion if Roe’s ruling is overturned.
In Oklahoma, abortion is punishable by up to ten years in prison.
It follows Texas, which enacted the nation’s most restrictive abortion law in September, banning the procedure after doctors were able to detect a fetus’ heartbeat – about six weeks into pregnancy – not There are exceptions for rape, sexual abuse, incest, or fetal abnormalities