Newsom Signs Bills Extending Abortion and “Gender-Affirming” Services

With a flick of his pen, Gov. Newsom signed several bills extending abortion services and protections for those providing “gender-affirming medical care” to patients in other states.

Set to go into effect Jan. 1, 2024, the new laws will include legal protections for abortion providers and medical staff who provide medical care to transgender patients to patients from states that prohibit such interventions. New laws will also allow out-of-state patients to obtain medications for abortions and gender transitions via telehealth, with prescriptions shipped from California pharmacies. In addition, law enforcement officials are now blocked from reporting or collaborating with officials from other states to prosecute those seeking those services in California.

In addition, a new law allowing physician assistants to perform surgical abortions without the supervision of a medical doctor and measures to increase the number of abortion providers will also take effect.

“Removing the words ‘unborn baby’ from the code, allowing physician assistants to perform abortions without the oversight of a doctor, and furthering the so-called ‘abortion sanctuary’ only further dehumanizes unborn children and harms women’s health and safety,” said Molly Sheahan, CCC Associate Director for Healthy Families.

Newsom also signed SB 407, which will require new foster parents in the state to commit to showing “ability and willingness to meet the needs of the child regardless of the child’s sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression, and that, should difficulties around these issues arise, a willingness to obtain resources offered by the county or foster family agency or other available resources to meet those needs.”

“I’m saddened to see the governor sign legislation that will reduce the number of caring foster families and expand abortion in the state,” said Sheahan. “While children are currently sleeping in motels, offices, and even jail cells, the state’s push for foster families to facilitate gender transitions will only lessen the number of loving families who would welcome a child. California should focus instead on uplifting and responding to the real needs of women, children, and families.”

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