University Will Fund Students’ Abortions After Petition From Socialist Group


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Alexa Schwerha Contributor
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Wesleyan University will cover abortion-related costs for students beginning in the fall 2023 semester, according to WTNH.

The Connecticut school will pay the cost of an abortion after insurance as well as emergency contraception including Plan B and Ella, according to its statement, reported by local outlet WTNH. The decision was made after the student group Wesleyan Democratic Socialists launched a Reproductive Justice Campaign that collected more than 700 signatures. (RELATED: State Abortion Laws May Sway Where Students Attend College: POLL)

“Wesleyan University has long provided financial support for those in need beyond what their medical insurance might cover,” the university said in its statement. “At a time when reproductive freedom is being threatened around the country, Wesleyan is dedicated to providing students with support for free emergency contraception or for the decision to terminate a pregnancy.”

The school will also cover the cost of Uber rides to clinics and post-abortion care, according to the Wesleyan Democratic Socialists. Wesleyan University did not respond to the DCNF’s repeated requests for comment.

The Wesleyan Democratic Socialists fundamentally believe in the right to abortion access and bodily autonomy, as well as the power that students and young people have in determining their own futures, changing their realities, and building a better world,” the chapter wrote in its press release. “At a time when the government is failing to defend people from right-wing, reactionary assaults on basic human rights, students are organizing, fighting back, and challenging the balance of power on college campuses.”

The chapter’s campaign was a response to the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade in a June 2022 decision, which gave states more authority to determine their own abortion-related laws. It is also part of Young Democratic Socialists of America’s “national campaign for Abortion, Bodily Autonomy, and Trans Socialism,” which lists demands that include adding “4 pro-choice justices to the Supreme Court,” preserving Roe v. Wade and that Congress approve Medicare for All that includes free abortion and transgender procedures.

“Although Connecticut protects the right to abortion, WesDS identified cost as a significant barrier to meeting the needs of all students,” the student group wrote. “Through a process of research, coordination with the Davison Health Center and student groups, WesDS not only developed a set of demands, but a community of concern to ensure Wesleyan implements and continues to develop their new policy.”

Barnard College in New York announced in October 2022 that it would ensure its “campus providers are prepared and trained in the provision of medication abortion by Fall 2023.” Democratic New York Gov. Kathy Hochul signed legislation into law on Tuesday that expands abortion access at all City University of New York and State University of New York campuses.

Wesleyan Democratic Socialists and YDSA did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s request for comment.

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