Salesforce has told employees that the company will help them and their families relocate if they’re concerned about abortion access in the state where they live. According to a Slack message obtained by CNBC, the company didn’t refer to any specific state, but the message was sent to thousands of employees late Friday, a day after the US Department of Justice sued Texas over its new abortion law.
“These are incredibly personal issues that directly impact many of us — especially women,” the Slack message reads, according to CNBC. “[I]f you have concerns about access to reproductive healthcare in your state, Salesforce will help relocate you and members of your immediate family.”
The Slack message didn’t suggest the company was taking a position on abortion or the new Texas law, noting that “we all have deeply held and different perspectives. As a company, we stand with all of our women at Salesforce and everywhere.”
Later, CEO Mark Benioff clarified that the company apparently did have Texas in mind when it sent the Slack message, tweeting “Ohana if you want to move we’ll help you exit TX. Your choice” and linking to the CNBC report (the word “Ohana” is considered a neologism that is typically translated to mean “family” in Hawaiian).
The Texas law bans abortion after six weeks— before most people realize they are pregnant— has no exception for rape or incest, and, empowers anyone to sue someone else for “aiding and abetting” abortions after six weeks. That includes not only the person seeking the abortion and abortion clinics, but anyone who helps pay for the procedure, or drives a person to have the procedure.
In a rare moment of solidarity, rival ride-hailing companies Lyft and Uber both said last week they would cover legal fees for any of its drivers sued under the Texas law. And Bumble and Tinder parent company Match Group announced the creation of a relief fund for women seeking abortions. Both companies have their headquarters in Texas.
The Justice Department seeks an injunction to prevent enforcement of the Texas law, noting in its lawsuit that “It is settled constitutional law that ‘a state may not prohibit any woman from making the ultimate decision to terminate her pregnancy before viability.’ But Texas has done just that.”