Safe Travels: Abortion Access Fund
Gas money, a bus ticket, or a night at a hotel … these costs should never stand in the way of accessing an abortion or be the deciding factor in whether someone makes it to their appointment. Our fund is here for people who need help in getting to their abortion appointment and having a safe place to rest if needed. With your donations, we help cover the cost of transportation and hotel lodging for people coming to Portland from Idaho, Southern Washington, and across Oregon who need an abortion, have no provider nearby, and cannot afford the additional expense of travel.
We collaborate with health centers that provide abortion care in Oregon and local abortion funds to arrange services. Services include:
- Hotel accommodations in Portland area.
- Prepaid debit cards for clients to use for gas/taxi/bus/train ticket.
- Our fund was started in 1989 and provides support for almost 60 women every year.
- We are a member of the National Network of Abortion Funds (NNAF).
- The majority of the women are traveling to Portland from Eugene (220 miles round trip) and Medford (540 miles round trip). 2016 Funding Report.
Why Safe Travels Matters
- People should have the resources and opportunity to make the best decisions for themselves and their families when seeking an abortion.
- 78% of Oregon counties have no abortion clinic. Many women have to travel hours to Portland in order to access care.
- Barriers such as geographic distance place a substantial obstacle in the path of women seeking an abortion. In fact, in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, the US Supreme Court decided that travel can constitute an undue burden on abortion access, and therefore violate the Constitution.
- Not having a safe place to stay puts an emotional and economic strain on women and families, and often stops people from making it to their appointment. We know that women who travel to Portland for care are considering many things, from childcare to time off from work, and being able to depend on a hotel room near the health center can make the vital difference in being able to afford the trip.
- When people delay or reschedule their abortion because of barriers such as cost of travel, it not only postpones timely care but also significantly increases the cost of the procedure. We want to make sure people can get to Portland when it is best for them and do not delay care.
- Safe Travels is the only source in Oregon that directly helps with the additional travel costs of seeking abortion care. These expenses range between $70-$300 per recipient and can make all the difference in one’s ability to safely access the services they need. With your help, we can assist even more women and help eliminate barriers to abortion access.