How retailers are responding to the Roe v. Wade ruling – Retail Dive

Written by Amanda

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The Supreme Court’s decision last week to overturn the half century-old constitutional protection of the right to abortion led several retailers and brands to join others in pledging to pay for medical services and travel for employees in need of the medical procedure.

Retailers like Levi’s and Amazon had previously released statements to that effect following a leaked draft of the landmark opinion last month. That indication of the high court’s reversal on Roe did little to prevent the shock that ensued following the official opinion, spurring protests nationwide, including on the court’s own doorstep.

Indeed, companies moving to protect access to abortion have the American public on their side: In a CBS/YouGov poll taken June 24 to 25, a solid majority (59%) in the U.S. disapprove of the ruling, with 64% saying they believe that abortion should be legal in all or most cases.

Retailers aren’t the only ones taking such steps — big banks including Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley are reiterating or adding abortion services and abortion-related travel expenses to their benefit plans, according to the Wall Street Journal

In a tweet following the decision, GlobalData Managing Director Neil Saunders, an investor analyst who covers the retail industry, said, “We must not rest until women’s rights are reinstated.”

“I believe women have a fundamental right to control their own bodies,” he wrote. “I find state [intervention] in their personal decisions abhorrent. Today, America has moved away from the cherished principles of individual rights.”

Here’s how the rest of the retail industry is responding.

Levi Strauss & Co

Levi Strauss reiterated its commitment to supporting reproductive rights in a statement. 

“We stand strongly against any actions that hinder the health and well-being of our employees, which means opposing any steps to restrict access to the full range of reproductive health care, including abortion,” the company wrote in a blog post. The retailer went on further to say that protecting reproductive rights is a critical business issue. 

The company said that its benefits plan allows for travel reimbursement for any covered medical expense not available within 50 miles of where an employee lives. Levi Strauss stated that a process is in place where employees not in its benefits plan (including part-time workers) can receive financial assistance regarding travel involved in medical care. 

The Levi Strauss Foundation is also providing grants to the Center for Reproductive Rights. 

Gap Inc.

Gap Inc., said that it offers a wide range of mental health and family planning benefits including coverage of adoptions, surrogacy, fertility treatments, paid parental leave, contraception and abortion. Seventy-six percent of the company’s current workforce is women

“Any employee covered under Gap Inc.’s UnitedHealthcare plans can access our benefits in any state, either that they reside in or travel to, now or in the future,” the retailer wrote in a statement. “We are committed to supporting all employees through these important life decisions — no matter where they live or which path they take.” 


Patagonia posted a statement on LinkedIn titled “Patagonia supports choice” in response to the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade on Friday. The retailer outlined its position that supporting employees goes beyond providing basic healthcare.

“That means offering employees the dignity of access to reproductive health care. It means supporting employees’ choices around if or when they have a child. It means giving parents the resources they need to work and raise children,” the retailer said in the post.

The outdoors retailer will give all employees training and bail for those who peacefully protest for reproductive justice, time off to vote, coverage for abortion care through company health plans with additional travel, lodging and food coverage for employees in restricted states.


Technology company Apple confirmed to CNBC Friday that employees can use company benefits to travel out-of-state for abortion services. Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment on its benefits.

“As we’ve said before, we support our employees’ rights to make their own decisions regarding their reproductive health. For more than a decade, Apple’s comprehensive benefits have allowed our employees to travel out-of-state for medical care if it is unavailable in their home state,” an Apple spokesperson told CNBC.

On the same day Roe v. Wade was overturned, members of Congress including Senator Cory Booker and Senator Elizabeth Warren co-signed a letter to Federal Trade Commission Chair Lina Khan, asking that Apple and Google be investigated for their “unfair and deceptive practices by enabling the collection and sale of hundreds of millions of mobile phone users’ personal data,” per the letter.

“With the Supreme Court likely to overturn Roe v. Wade, individuals seeking abortions and other reproductive healthcare will become particularly vulnerable to privacy harms, including through the collection and sharing of their location data,” the letter said.

Dick’s Sporting Goods

Dick’s Sporting Goods CEO Lauren Hobart was among the retail executives issuing a response to the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade. Hobart on Friday announced the retailer would provide up to $4,000 in travel expense reimbursement for any of its employees, spouses or dependents enrolled in its medical plan, along with one support person, in order to obtain an abortion where it is legally available.

“We recognize people feel passionately about this topic — and that there are teammates and athletes who will not agree with this decision. However, we also recognize that decisions involving health and families are deeply personal and made with thoughtful consideration,” Hobart said in a LinkedIn post. “We are making this decision so our teammates can access the same health care options, regardless of where they live, and choose what is best for them.”

The retailer’s stock jumped nearly 10% Friday afternoon upon the announcement.


In a statement emailed to Retail Dive, Nike reiterated that its benefits cover travel and lodging expenses for abortion when employees do not have access to those services “close to home.” The company added that it regularly makes “adjustments to our benefits to ensure employees have access to the quality healthcare they need.”

“No matter where our teammates are on their family planning journey – from contraception and abortion coverage, to pregnancy and family-building support through fertility, surrogacy and adoption benefits – we are here to support their decisions,” the company said.


Lululemon shared a post to its Instagram stating that “reproductive rights are human rights” and said the decision to overturn Roe v. Wade “does not align” with Lululemon’s support of well-being and the power of choice

The company noted that its U.S. benefits plan “will continue to support our employees should they need to leave the state to access treatment related to their reproductive health and family planning.” Lululemon also donated $500,000 to the Center for Reproductive Rights, and said it continues to support organizations like the Black Women’s Health Imperative.

“We recognize the impact of this ruling on people for years to come — including our valued employees,” the company wrote.


In a statement emailed to Retail Dive, Adidas said that its benefits plan would “continue to cover reproductive resources like contraception and abortion support, pregnancy, fertility, and other family planning and building services.” If abortion services are not accessible close to an employee’s home, the company’s plan will now cover travel and lodging expenses up to $10,000 per occurrence for all U.S. employees enrolled in its medical plan.

“Adidas stands firm in support of the right to choose appropriate healthcare for yourself. A crucial part of sport is taking care of mind, body, and physical wellbeing,” the company said. “The health and safety of our people is our number one priority.”

Victoria’s Secret

Victoria’s Secret posted a statement on Instagram regarding the overturning of Roe v. Wade on Friday, stating that it “supports a woman’s right to choose” and is “committed to becoming the leading advocate for women.”

The brand linked to its company benefits page, which lists “therapeutic and elective abortions” as an employee benefit.


Madewell on Friday announced it joined the list of companies in signing onto the Don’t Ban Equality statement. The organization was created in response to bans passing in states in 2019 that restricted access to reproductive healthcare.

“We firmly believe that everyone should have access to comprehensive reproductive care. So, we’re taking action,” Madewell said in an Instagram post.

The retailer also said it will continue to support the American Civil Liberties Union as it works to maintain equality for all.

“When everyone is empowered to succeed, our communities are better for it,” the company said in its post.

Kenneth Cole

In response to Roe v. Wade being overturned, Kenneth Cole wrote in a Twitter post that his fashion company still stands behind an ad it ran in the early ‘90s. The ad reads, “We think women should have a choice when it comes to being pregnant. Barefoot is another story.” 

On its Instagram page, the company posted a picture of a sign that says, “Choice — no woman should be without it,” and wrote in the caption, “This isn’t over.” 

Tory Burch

Tory Burch in a statement released via social media, said that she is “outraged” by the Supreme Court’s decision. “I am truly saddened for the women who will not receive the care they need or will seek unsafe alternatives in states where abortion is not accessible.” 

She said that her company is reviewing its benefits plans to ensure there are no obstacles to abortion and reproductive care for employees who must travel outside of their state. 

“Empowering women is our company’s guiding principle. This decision was a giant step backwards for women, but we are undeterred and know we need to step up now more than ever,” she wrote in her post.


Pacsun’s co-CEOs Alfred Chang and Mike Relich posted to Linkedin a written statement confirming the company’s immediate update to its healthcare benefit policy to help cover travel costs of abortion. 

“Today, the basic human right of bodily autonomy was taken away unfairly from women in our country, which we all believe to be a leader in progress and one that stands for all things good,” Chang and Relich said in the statement.

In addition to its current partnership with Girl Up, the company said it would be making an additional donation to the organization to “help educate women and girls about their agency and bodily autonomy as part of the full range of rights to which they are entitled.”

Source: retaildive.com

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Hi there, I am Amanda and I work as an editor at impactinvesting.ai;  if you are interested in my services, please reach me at amanda.impactinvesting.ai