The Biden administration is now offering abortion access to migrant youth, including transportation from states with abortion restrictions to other states where the procedure is legal.
The Department of Health and Human Services provided a memo to the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) regarding the new changes in a memo released on Thursday regarding the abortion services.
The guidance instructs all ORR care providers to make all “reasonable efforts” to help migrant minors access abortions upon request.
“This may involve transporting a minor to a state in which abortion is lawful and available if the minor is currently in a state in which abortion is not lawful or available,” the guidance reads.
The ORR’s guidance includes two areas of focus. First, the agency is instructed to place pregnant migrant minors in shelters in states where abortion access has not been banned.
Second, a pregnant minor in a shelter who requests an abortion in a state where it is illegal must be provided transportation to another state where the abortion is legal.
“We applaud ORR’s decision to place pregnant unaccompanied immigrant youth in states where they can access the full range of health care they may need, including abortion,” Brigitte Amiri, deputy director of the ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project, wrote in a statement.
Chelsey Youman, the national legislative advisor for the pro-life advocacy organization Human Coalition Action, blasted the change.
“What kind of message does this send to the rest of the world that we prioritize abortions instead of protection for immigrants?” Youman said in a statement to the Christian Post.
“These children need compassion, quality medical care, and support — but instead we’re offering abortion — paid for by taxpayers. The United States has the power to end human trafficking and provide real solutions to hurting communities along the border, instead the administration chooses neglect. Vulnerable immigrant populations deserve better,” she added.
The updated guidance is not the first move by the Biden administration to increase abortion access through federal actions.
The Daily Wire previously reported in September that the administration announced it would begin offering “abortion counseling” and abortions to veterans through the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) hospitals regardless of state law.
“As abortion bans come into force across the country, veterans in many States are no longer assured access to abortion services in their communities, even when those services are needed,” the rule said. “Unless VA removes its existing prohibitions on abortion-related care and makes clear that needed abortion-related care is authorized, these veterans will face serious threats to their life and health.”
Veteran Affairs Secretary Denis McDonough confirmed that one of the department’s medical centers performed its first abortion during testimony before the Veterans Affairs Committee in September.
“The principle that led us to take this step is our veteran patient safety,” McDonough said during the hearing. “We take that very, very seriously and every decision we make flows from that principle.”