JPMorgan Chase, one of the largest employers in the U.S. financial industry, told workers that it will pay for travel to states that allow legal abortions, according to a memo first obtained by CNBC.
The news came as part of an internal communication to employees explaining expanded medical benefits set to begin in July, according to the June 1 memo.
“Effective in July, you will be able to access additional covered benefits under the U.S. Medical Plan,” the New York-based bank told workers. Those changes include “family-building benefits, such as cryopreservation,” and enhanced benefits for LGBT+ workers, the bank said.
“We will also expand our existing health care travel benefit, which today covers certain services such as organ transplants, to all covered health care services that can only be obtained far from your home,” JPMorgan told its staff.
JPMorgan’s announcement comes as the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, the landmark ruling that established the constitutional right to abortion in the U.S. in 1973. The expected result of that is that employees in states where the procedure is banned will have to travel to locales where it is still allowed. Before today, only rival bank Citigroup was known to have provided the travel benefit for employees.
In a question-and-answer web page linked to the June 1 memo, the bank directly addressed whether it was covering abortion, as well as out-of-state travel to have the procedure.
“Will you pay for an employee to travel to another state to seek an abortion if their state won’t allow them to get one?” the bank said.
“Yes. Our health care plans have historically covered travel benefits for certain covered services that would require travel,” JPMorgan said. “Beginning in July, we will expand this benefit to include all covered services that can only be obtained far from your home, which would include legal abortion.”
Abortions have long been covered by the company’s health plan, the bank added.