Tags: Abortion | Health Topics | austin | texas | pro choice | pro life | government

Austin, Texas, Approves $150K for Abortion Access

pro choice protesters march and hold up signs to "free women"
(Emily Ng/AP)

By    |   Wednesday, 11 September 2019 04:39 PM

Austin, Texas, is now the first city in the United States to allocate public money to help low-income women cover the costs of accessing abortions.

The City Council approved a $4.2 billion budget Tuesday that allocates $150,000 for providing "logistical and supportive services for abortion access" to low-income women in the state's capital.

Those services include "transportation, childcare, case management and other support services," CNN reports.

The vote comes shortly after Texas banned financial relationships between state agencies and abortion providers that took effect last week.

"Because of these continual barriers that our state puts in front of women for a procedure that is legal, for me this is about the access," Austin Mayor Pro Tem Delia Garza, a Democrat, told CNN.

Garza, who was first elected in 2014, proposed the amendment to the city's budget, which excludes abortion providers and related entities from accessing the funds in trying to bypass the new law.

"The symbolic part of it is also important: We support women, we support their choices and we're doing what we can, where we can, so that we can access the full spectrum of health care, including abortion," Garza said.

The council approved the budget on a 10-1 vote, with Democratic Austin Councilman Jimmy Flannigan as the lone dissenter to the amendment and the budget.

Flannigan, in his second term, told CNN that he supported abortion rights but believed that county health agencies should cover such costs.

"For me, it really is about how it's the city that the community goes to for everything, and that's just not sustainable," he said.

The funds will go to the Austin Public Health Department, which would award it through competitive bidding to groups already providing logistical support services, CNN reports.

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Austin, Texas, is now the first city in the United States to allocate public money to help low-income women cover the costs of accessing abortions.
austin, texas, pro choice, pro life, government, funding
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2019-39-11
Wednesday, 11 September 2019 04:39 PM
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