Washington D.C. – U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) joined U.S Senators Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Patty Murray (D-WA), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), and 29 of their Senate colleagues in introducing the Freedom to Travel for Health Care Act of 2022. This legislation would make it crystal clear that it is illegal for anti-choice states to limit travel for abortion services and would empower the Attorney General and impacted individuals to bring civil action against those who restrict a woman’s right to cross state lines to receive legal reproductive care.

“Just a few weeks ago, the Supreme Court took us back nearly 50 years and is currently threatening other decisions that undermine our freedom to decide when, whether, and how we have a family,” said Brown. “We’ve already seen how this is putting the health of Ohioans at risk as they are forced to travel around the country to get vital, sometimes lifesaving care. The Senate must pass the Freedom to Travel for Health Care Act to protect Ohio women and girls and the health care professionals who serve them.”

A press release today from Brown’s office said, “Legislation introduced in Missouri and draft legislation proposed by anti-choice extremists make clear that interstate travel for reproductive health care is under attack. The Freedom to Travel for Health Care Act of 2022 underscores the Constitutional protections for interstate travel and provides redress for women whose rights are violated. The legislation would also protect health care providers from prosecution and lawsuits for serving individuals traveling from other states.”

On Friday, Brown joined advocates and providers at Trinity Commons in Cleveland for a roundtable discussion on reproductive rights less than three weeks after Roe v. Wade was overturned and Ohio’s six-week abortion ban law went into effect. Brown heard from those caregivers about how he can support them, and Ohioans who can no longer access essential health care in Ohio. In June, Brown joined 33 of his Senate colleagues sent a letter to President Joe Biden urging “bold action” to protect the right to abortion after the conservative wing of the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. In May, Brown voted in support of the Women’s Health Protection Act (WHPA), which would protect women’s freedom to make their own health care decisions. Brown has supported the legislation since 2013 and joined 47 of his colleagues in the Senate in reintroducing this legislation in 2021.

In addition to Senators Brown, Cortez Masto, Whitehouse, Murray, and Gillibrand, the legislation is also cosponsored by Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), John Hickenlooper (D-CO), Alex Padilla (D-CA), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Jack Reed (D-RI), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Chris Murphy (D-CT), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Tina Smith (D-MN), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Chris Coons (D-DE), Ed Markey (D-MA), Reverend Raphael Warnock (D-GA), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Ron Wyden (D-OR), Tim Kaine (D-VA), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Ben Ray Lujan (D-NM), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Jacky Rosen (D-NV), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), and Jon Tester (D-MT).

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