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SACRAMENTO – Today, Governor Newsom signed nine bills – providing stronger protections for providers delivering abortion care, expanding the health care workforce, and protecting patient reproductive health care information.
This action builds on California's nation-leading efforts to safeguard access to reproductive health care and remain a safe haven state – including protecting patients, providers, and supporters; expanding access to care and services; and sharing California's efforts and actions with other states through the Reproductive Freedom Alliance.
WHAT GOVERNOR NEWSOM SAID: "Radical politicians continue their all out assault on women's health care with dangerous and deadly consequences. The right to an abortion is enshrined in California's constitution. We will continue to protect women and health care workers who are seeking and providing basic care."
WHAT FIRST PARTNER JENNIFER SIEBEL NEWSOM: "While California has institutionalized nation-leading protections for women, birthing people, and providers, we cannot become complacent in our work to combat extremists' outright assaults on women and our reproductive agency. I'm grateful to the Governor and the Legislature for continuing to take action to expand women's health care and reproductive freedom and for protecting those seeking and providing care. The policies affirmed today are emblematic of California's ongoing commitment to serve as a safe haven for those seeking reproductive care."
The bill package signed today includes:
PROTECTING PEOPLE FROM OTHER STATES' ABORTION BANS:
- Senate Bill 345 by Senator Nancy Skinner (D–Berkeley) improves protections for providers against the enforcement of other states' laws that criminalize or limit reproductive and gender affirming health care services.
- Senate Bill 487 by Senator Toni Atkins (D–San Diego) provides additional safeguards for California abortion providers to participate in the Medi-Cal program, regardless of enforcement activities in another state, if the conduct is legal under California law.
- Assembly Bill 1707 by Assemblymember Blanca Pacheco (D–Downey) protects health care providers and facilities in California from state licensing actions against them based on the enforcement of hostile laws that restrict abortion and gender affirming care in another state.
PROTECTING REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH INFORMATION:
- Assembly Bill 254 by Assemblymember Rebecca Bauer-Kahan (D–Orinda) protects reproductive and sexual health digital data included in personal health tracking applications.
- Assembly Bill 352 by Assemblymember Rebecca Bauer-Kahan (D–Orinda) enhances privacy protections for electronic medical records related to abortion, gender affirming care, pregnancy loss, and other sensitive services, closing a major loophole in privacy protections for people traveling to California for abortion and gender affirming care.
PROTECTING PATIENTS & PROVIDERS:
- Assembly Bill 571 by Assemblymember Cottie Petrie-Norris (D–Laguna Beach) prohibits an insurer from refusing to provide malpractice insurance to a provider on the basis of them offering abortion, contraception, or gender affirming care that is lawful in California but unlawful in another state.
- Assembly Bill 1720 by Assemblymember Rebecca Bauer-Kahan (D–Orinda) clarifies that ultrasounds and similar medical imaging devices must be offered in licensed facilities or by licensed providers, protecting against unscrupulous uses.
EXPANDING REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH CARE WORKFORCE:
- Assembly Bill 1646 by Assemblymember Stephanie Nguyen (D–Elk Grove) facilitates guest rotations in medical residency programs in California for residents who can no longer receive the proper training due to their program being in a state with restrictions or bans.
- Signed earlier this month, Senate Bill 385 (Atkins, D – San Diego) allows physician assistants to provide abortion care, after receiving training and in compliance with protocols.
WHAT LEGISLATIVE WOMEN'S CAUCUS CHAIR SENATOR NANCY SKINNER SAID: "As abortions, contraception, and other essential health care continue to be criminalized across the country, California is not backing down. With Governor Newsom's signing of these groundbreaking new bills authored by members of the Legislative Women's Caucus and sponsored by the California Future of Abortion Council, we have solidified our position as the national leader for reproductive freedom. These bills further strengthen and expand California's legal protections for patients, doctors, nurses and everyone involved in providing and dispensing reproductive and gender-affirming care."
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WHAT LEGISLATIVE WOMEN'S CAUCUS VICE CHAIR ASSEMBLYMEMBER CECILIA AGUIAR-CURRY SAID: "Over the last two years, the Legislative Women's Caucus has partnered with the Future of Abortion Council to protect, expand, and strengthen access to reproductive health and abortion services. Last year, we enacted 14 bills and budget funding to expand and protect reproductive rights and services in our state. This year, we built on that momentum with legislation that ensures California remains a national leader in the fight for reproductive justice. We commend Governor Newsom for signing this important package of bills — proof of our long-standing promise to be a refuge state for anyone seeking an abortion."
WHAT THE CALIFORNIA FUTURE OF ABORTION COUNCIL SAID: "The CA FAB Council Steering Committee is pleased that this critical package of bills has been signed by Governor Newsom and will now become law. As more states enact extreme and harmful abortion restrictions, California continues to lead the way in pioneering innovative policies to protect and expand access to the full spectrum of sexual and reproductive health care. The bills signed today not only strengthen legal protections for people seeking or providing abortion and gender-affirming care but include crucial reforms to improve accessibility and affordability of services for all who need them. We thank the Governor, as well as the bill authors and Legislative Women's Caucus, for exemplifying the kind of leadership we need as we continue the work to make California a reproductive freedom state."
People in need of abortion care or support accessing abortion care, regardless of what state they call home, can utilize California's nation-leading website: Abortion.CA.Gov.
A complete list of bills signed by Governor Newsom today is below:
- AB 254 by Assemblymember Rebecca Bauer-Kahan (D-Orinda) – Confidentiality of Medical Information Act: reproductive or sexual health application information.
- AB 352 by Assemblymember Rebecca Bauer-Kahan (D-Orinda) – Health information.
- AB 571 by Assemblymember Cottie Petrie-Norris (D–Laguna Beach) – Medical malpractice insurance.
- AB 1646 by Assemblymember Stephanie Nguyen (D–Elk Grove) – Physicians and surgeons: postgraduate training: guest rotations.
- AB 1707 by Assemblymember Blanca Pacheco (D–Downey) – Health professionals and facilities: adverse actions based on another state's law.
- AB 1720 by Assemblymember Rebecca Bauer-Kahan (D–Orinda) – Clinics: prenatal screening.
- SB 345 by Senator Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley) – Health care services: legally protected health care activities.
- SB 487 by Senator Toni Atkins (D-San Diego) – Abortion: provider protections.
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