The City of Austin and Travis County should take necessary steps to ensure that patients and clinic staff are able to access an abortion clinic free of harassment, violence, and obstruction. The Austin/Travis community deserves targeted programs to support reproductive health clinic access, and such programs should be properly implemented, with sufficient enforcement and adequate resources.
The City of Austin and Travis County should support access to all forms of contraception, including condoms, oral contraception and long-acting, reversible contraception.
Emergency contraception is a safe form of reproductive health care and should be affordable and easily accessible to those who need it in Austin and Travis County pharmacies, emergency rooms, and publicly-funded health centers. The city and county should also create programs promoting public awareness about emergency contraception, take steps to encourage all health care providers to inform their patients about this option and take steps to ensure all area pharmacies are sufficiently stocking emergency contraception on their shelves and that all pharmacists are fully informed on regulations of sale (no ID required, no age limit, etc.).
No one should be denied access to safe abortion care services just because they can’t afford to pay. The City of Austin and Travis County Commissioners Court should pass a resolution denouncing the federal Hyde Amendment and other state laws that ban public funding for abortion. Comprehensive information on available funding options, including local nonprofit organizations that provide financial assistance for abortion care—such as abortion funds and practical support groups—should be available at county hospitals.
Coverage for abortion procedures and contraception should be available for people incarcerated in Travis County prisons, along with available resources and information needed to gain access.
Healthy, Safe and Thriving Families
Health care before, throughout, and after pregnancy should be available to all residents of the Austin/Travis County area. The City of Austin and Travis County Commissioners Court should work with local public health professionals and the medical community to create and support publicly-funded prenatal, pregnancy and postpartum care programs, including screenings and treatment of postpartum depression. The city and county should also take steps to ensure infant care is affordable and available to all new families in the Austin/Travis County area.
The Austin City Council should pass an ordinance to require all private employers to provide paid sick and safe time for employees– a resolution should be passed to gain stakeholder feedback from community members on what should be included in the ordinance.
The City of Austin and Travis County should require all employers to provide 12 weeks of paid family leave at 100 percent of the employee’s salary following the birth or adoption of a child and to make necessary accommodations for pregnant and breastfeeding employees. Paid family leave has been proven to improve the health of infants and new parents, the duration of breastfeeding, the involvement of fathers in raising children, and economic opportunity for women.
All Austin and Travis County residents should have access to family planning, prenatal care, and other basic health care services regardless of financial or immigrant status.
Austin & Travis County will support immigrant families and their safety by ensuring that local law enforcement does not act as an extension of federal deportation force. We commend the City of Austin and county officials for denouncing and challenging the hateful and dangerous anti-immigration bill known as Senate Bill 4.
The City of Austin and Travis County Commissioners Court should ensure that all city and county employees are paid a minimum hourly wage of $15 per hour.
The City of Austin and Travis County Commissioners Court should guarantee equal pay for equal work and establish legal protections for wage theft and pay inequity.
The Austin City Council and Travis County Commissioners Court should work with the appropriate partners to prioritize the processing of sexual assault evidence and survivor-centered interventions.
Austin City Council and Travis County Commissioners Court should work with other local policy makers and communities most affected by over-policing and criminalization to reduce incarceration rates and eliminate racial disparities in Travis County jail.
Supporting Teens and Young Parents
All Austin-area public schools should provide evidence-based sex education – that is age appropriate, comprehensive, and LGBTQIA competent – from kindergarten through high school.
All Austin-area public schools should offer free contraception for students.
Austin-area high schools should empower and support pregnant and parenting students by providing excused absences and medical leave, child care, breastfeeding and pumping rooms,staff training on offering non-judgmental support, and information about resources for young families.
The Austin City Council and Travis County Commissioners Court should pass resolutions strongly condemning anti-abortion legislation passed at the state level, including Senate Bill 8 — which criminalizes safe medicine and cuts off access to abortion care — and House Bill 3994 passed in 2015 — which has made abortion inaccessible for many young people in the city. Additionally, Austin City Council and Travis County Commissioners Court should pass a resolution condemning House Bill 214 – which bans private insurance coverage of abortion.