Uber & Lyft will cover Texas drivers' legal fees if they're sued for taking women to abortion appointments under new law
UBER and Lyft have both said they will cover Texas drivers' legal fees if they are sued for taking women to abortion appointments under a new law.
The two ride hailing apps announced the plans after the state introduced a law that bans most abortions and heralds the most restrictive measures in the US.
It also gives citizens the right to file civil suits and collect damages against anyone aiding an abortion including those who transport women to clinics.
Lyft said it has created a fund to cover 100 per cent of the legal fees for drivers sued under the law while driving on its platform.
Calling the Texas law an attack on women's right to choose, Lyft also said it would donate $1 million to Planned Parenthood.
'RIGHT TO CHOOSE'
In a statement the company said: "We want to be clear: Drivers are never responsible for monitoring where their riders go or why.
"Imagine being a driver and not knowing if you are breaking the law by giving someone a ride.
"Similarly, riders never have to justify, or even share, where they are going and why."
"Imagine being a pregnant woman trying to get to a healthcare appointment and not knowing if your driver will cancel on you for fear of breaking a law," they added.
Lyft chief executive Logan Green said on Twitter: "This is an attack on women's access to healthcare and on their right to choose."
TAKING A STAND
Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi responded to Lyfts statement in a tweet announcing a similar policy for its drivers.
He wrote: "Drivers shouldn’t be put at risk for getting people where they want to go.
"Team Uber is in too and will cover legal fees in the same way. Thanks for the push."
The Texas law bans abortions once medical professionals can detect cardiac activity, usually around six weeks and often before women know they're pregnant.
Earlier this week, the chief executive of Tinder-owner Match Group said she is setting up a fund to help any Texas-based employees who need to seek an abortion outside the state.
Rival dating app Bumble also criticized the law and announced on Instagram it will donate funds to six organizations that support womens reproductive rights.
Both dating companies are based in Texas and led by women.
BIGGEST CURB IN DECADES
Match Group said CEO Shar Dubey is creating the fund on her own and not through the company.
She spoke out against the law in a memo to employees Thursday.
Dubey said in the memo: "I immigrated to America from India over 25 years ago and I have to say, as a Texas resident, I am shocked that I now live in a state where women's reproductive laws are more regressive than most of the world, including India."
The Texas law, which took effect Tuesday after the Supreme Court denied an emergency appeal from abortion providers, constitutes the biggest curb to the constitutional right to an abortion in decades.
It does not make exceptions for rape or incest.
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