Chobani CEO: Employees travel, lodging costs for out-of-state abortion care will be covered

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Posted at 10:34 AM, May 12, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-12 12:48:03-04

Chobani employees who need to travel out-of-state for women's reproductive health care not available in Idaho will have their travel and lodging expenses covered, the company's CEO announced Thursday.

CEO Hamdi Ulukaya announced on social media transportation, lodging and childcare costs for an employee or their dependents will be covered under amended company health plans. A memo sent to employees Thursday notes the updated policies also applies to cancer treatment, transplant surgery, bariatric surgery, gender reassignment care, abortion and other non-routine procedures that require travel.

"We know that some of these issues are not without controversy, emotion, or political and religious implications. We recognize that we have employees with strongly-held views on both sides of this issue and we respect the deeply-held beliefs on both sides," the memo says. "For Chobani, this is not a political stance or posturing — it’s a reaffirmation of our core belief that we will strive to do what’s best for the safety, health and well-being of our employees and their families. We hope other employers will consider following our lead as we navigate this challenging new environment together."

"Businesses have an obligation to prioritize their employees’ health, safety & well-being. That's why (Chobani) amended its health plans to support our employees’ ability to access specialized healthcare not available locally – including women’s reproductive health services," Ulukaya said in a statement.

Several large companies announced plans to cover abortion-related costs for employees who need to travel to receive healthcare, including Amazon and Tesla.