by Kelvey Vander Hart
Expanding a 2016 ban on city-funded employee travel to certain locations, San Francisco will now also prohibit employees from taking paid travel to states that are pro-life.
San Francisco Supervisor Vallie Brown introduced the proposal on Tuesday at a meeting for the city’s board. The proposal would expand the current ban on paid travel to states that have “anti-LGBT” laws by including highly pro-life states as well.
Brown argued that this proposal, “will expand the existing ordinance to states that have waged war on our constitutionally protected right to an abortion.”
All eleven members of the board were “yes” votes, passing the proposal unanimously. The board will be required to vote on it one more time before sending it to the mayor’s office to be signed.
Georgia, Louisiana, Ohio, Kentucky, and Mississippi will all be targeted states for this ban because they have passed laws that ban abortions after six weeks of pregnancy. Additionally, Missouri has banned abortions after eight weeks of pregnancy and Alabama has banned all abortions in the state that aren’t necessary to prevent serious medical risks to the mother, making both states likely to also be included under this prohibition.
This ban will not only prohibit city-funded travel for employees to these states but will also forbid contracts with companies that headquarter in pro-life states. Brown pointed out the economic impact of this ban when she was presenting the proposal, stating, “Let’s put our money where our mouth is.”
The original 2016 ban impacted states which were viewed as having anti-LGBT laws on their books and also banned both travel funding and city contracts. States like Texas and Kentucky were impacted.
San Francisco’s 2016 ban was followed by a 2018 ban across the entire state of California. The 2018 ban prohibited state-sponsored travel to states viewed as allowing discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. Alabama, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Dakota, and Texas are all on the list of prohibited states.
A similar ban in response to Alabama’s abortion prohibition was enacted by Los Angeles city officials earlier this year.