Mayor Cooper calls for new measures for Metro employee women’s healthcare options

WSMV Mayor John Cooper
WSMV Mayor John Cooper
Published: Jun. 30, 2022 at 5:30 PM CDT
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - Mayor John Cooper, along with several Metro Council leaders, called for a new initiative regarding women’s health care for all Metro Nashville employees in the wake of the recent United States Supreme Court decision.

Mayor Cooper, along with Council Members Burkley Allen, Delishia Porterfield, and Erin Evans, said they would formally request the Metro Employee Benefit Board to extend health coverage for Metro employees to include reimbursement to obtain medical procedures unavailable in Tennessee.

The benefit would include transportation, accommodations, and related costs if approved. Council Members Allen, Porterfield, and Evans said they plan to sponsor a resolution for Council to consider codifying the request.

“Last week, the Supreme Court overturned 50 years of precedent and took away a fundamental right for millions of people across the country, including hundreds of thousands right here in Nashville,” said Mayor John Cooper. “While our options to protect the right to choose in Nashville are limited by current law, we must do everything we can to continue providing access to health care and safe, affordable care for those who need it. I’m proud to be advocating for all Metro employees to have this essential benefit.”

The resolution calls for the Metro Employee Board to assess the current availability of benefits providing transportation, accommodation, and related costs when necessary to obtain medical treatment unavailable in Tennessee. It also further requests that if medical benefits do not include coverage for costs of receiving reproductive healthcare medical treatment, that coverage can be extended by the Metro Employee Benefit Board.

“A week ago, every woman in the Metropolitan Government enjoyed medical benefits that guaranteed access to safe and legal abortion services whenever medically necessary,” said Council Member Erin Evans. “No one ever wants to endure an agonizing choice, but knowing there was access to reproductive healthcare was of enormous comfort to women everywhere. Last Friday, the Supreme Court unilaterally removed that right and that security. If the Council can provide alternatives for thousands of Metro Government employees who no longer have that choice, we should do just that.”

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