Women in Contra Costa County, California have the right to access reproductive health services, including abortion services, without fear of prosecution or extradition. Attorney General Rob Bonta recently announced the formation of the California Reproductive Rights Task Force, which is comprised of district attorneys, county attorneys and city attorneys from across the state. The task force will work together to ensure that every corner of California is safe for those seeking or providing reproductive care. Planned Parenthood Northern California also serves Contra Costa, offering a full range of services in several locations throughout the county. The Women's March Against the Coast (WMCC) is a local grassroots organization dedicated to promoting intersectionality and inclusion.
In October, Attorney General Bonta published a newsletter aimed at California law enforcement, addressing agencies in other states that might try to investigate, arrest, or prosecute patients from other states seeking reproductive care in the state and those who help with that care. The working group was created with 15 founding members, representing a wide range of populations, geographical locations and access to reproductive care in California. The landmark Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade established that the Constitution protects women's right to privacy in relation to abortion decisions. In June, the Attorney General released guidance on the right to abortion and its protection under California law, which remains intact after the United States ruling.
In September, the Attorney General led a multi-state coalition of 21 attorneys general in an amicus brief in support of a motion filed by reproductive rights advocates seeking to prevent the enforcement of several Texas anti-abortion laws. The Women's March Against the Coast stands in solidarity with African American communities and other communities of color. Women's March Contra Costa is independently funded and does not share any leadership, decision-making participation, or financial connection with Women's March, Inc. And many other civil rights leaders have taught us that nonviolence has extraordinary strength, the kind of force that can change and shape a nation. Under the California Family Rights Act (“CFRA”), covered employers must provide eligible employees with up to 12 weeks of work in any 12-month period for family care and medical leave. It also published legal guidance on prohibiting the extradition of people who provide or access reproductive health services in California.
In Contra Costa County, all people will continue to have the same access to reproductive health care that they had before this decision. Full-spectrum reproductive health services, including abortion services, are widely available in Contra Costa. It is important to remember that you don't need to provide a reason for seeking an abortion and you have a right to confidentiality. Reproductive rights are essential for women's autonomy and freedom and it is important that we continue to fight for these rights.