“As other states and the federal government go backward, restricting reproductive freedom, in California we are moving forward, expanding access and reaffirming a woman’s right (to) choose,” Newsom, a Democrat, said in a statement. “We’re removing barriers to reproductive health — increasing access on college campuses and using technology to modernize how patients interact with providers.”
“By ensuring that abortion care is available on campus, college students will not have to choose between delaying important medical care or needing to travel long distances or even missing classes or work,” the bill’s sponsor, Democratic state Sen. Connie Leyva, said in a statement.
The law will not go into effect until 2023, and depends on $10,290,000 in private money to fund the initiative. A group of backers, including the Women’s Foundation of California and Tara Health Foundation, raised the money, according to justCARE, a coalition of abortion rights groups supporting the initiative.
“With Governor Newsom’s signature today, California is showing the nation that providing medication abortion on campus is the right thing to do,” said Ruth Shaber, president of the Tara Health Foundation, in a statement. “The bill is a testament to California’s commitment and the belief that once a student has decided to end a pregnancy, they should be able to get the care they need without unnecessary barriers or delay.”
Anti-abortion groups were quick to decry the new law.
“Student fees underwrite the costs of the healthcare centers on campuses, which will now be required to distribute deadly chemical abortion pills and healthcare professionals will also be forced to hand them out no matter the consequences to women’s health,” Students for Life of America President Kristan Hawkins said in a statement.