A bill that would require public universities in California to make abortion medication available on campus passed the state Senate on Monday.
Abortion medication consists of two doses that a woman must take before she is 10 weeks pregnant. Currently, campus health centers refer students to off-campus abortion clinics for such services.
Senate Bill 320, introduced by Sen. Connie Leyva (D-Chino), would mandate University of California and California State University campus health centers to provide abortion medication and administer it on campus by 2022. However, the requirement is conditional upon private donors contributing funds to launch the program.
The CSU system has expressed concern over the bill, saying its health center staffs may not have a level of expertise needed to administer abortion medication. Supporters of the bill have argued that forcing students to leave university campuses in order to terminate a pregnancy can cause needless emotional, education and financial problems.
On Monday, the state Senate passed SB 320 on a 25-13 vote. The bill now moves on to the Assembly.
If SB 320 were to become law, California would become the first state in the country to require public universities to provide abortion medication.