TRAVIS COUNTY, Texas (KXAN) — The Travis County Commissioners Court signed a resolution Tuesday affirming the county’s commitment to reproductive healthcare access and deprioritizing investigations into possible abortion procedures or cases within its jurisdiction.
On June 24, the Supreme Court of the United States overturned the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that prevented states from directly banning abortion access. Texas’ trigger law banning virtually all abortions statewide went into effect Aug. 25.
Under the resolution spearheaded by Travis County Judge Andy Brown and Commissioner Brigid Shea, the county court signaled it will not prioritize county funds for the following actions:
- Storing any report of an abortion, miscarriage or healthcare act.
- Share any information with other governmental bodies or agencies about any abortion, miscarriage or reproductive healthcare act unless “such information is provided to defend the patient’s right to abortion care or the healthcare provider’s right to provide that care.”
- Surveil or collect information connected to an individual or organization to determine whether an abortion took place. Exceptions to that are aggregated, non-identifying data collected that are not tied to criminal investigations, enforcement or prosecution for a reproductive healthcare act.
While presenting the resolution, Shea said the court will not prioritize taxpayer money to “persecute people,” adding politicians shouldn’t be making decisions for people or criminalizing and prosecuting healthcare providers who seek and offer reproductive healthcare services.
“Reproductive choices for women are some of the most difficult and personal decisions anyone has to make,” Shea said. “And I can’t imagine that many people would think that politicians should be making that decision for women.”
As part of the resolution, commissioners added they’ll work in tandem with other county and community-based organizations to expand access to and educational resources for contraceptions.
The resolution comes as Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) introduced a bill in the Senate Tuesday that proposes a national abortion ban. Nationally, more than a dozen states have enacted a near or total ban of abortions for state residents, with several others to join imminently.