New Jersey is Officially America’s First Abortion Sanctuary State

2 mins read
FILE PHOTO: Demonstrators protest near the Supreme Court over abortion rights in Washington

TRENTON, NJ – New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy has signed two bills that make the Garden State America’s first codified abortion sanctuary state. New Jersey is already an illegal immigration sanctuary state and the soft of crime bail reform laws and prisoner release actions by the governor also make it a criminal sanctuary state.

This week, Murphy signed two bills that protect the rights of doctors, medical professionals, businesses, and those seeking to travel to New Jersey for an abortion.

The move comes after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe vs. Wade, returning the abortion legislation powers back to the states, which benefits New Jersey’s right to become an abortion sanctuary state, as the decision intended.

“While others throughout the country are revoking a woman’s right to reproductive freedom, New Jersey will continue to defend this fundamental right in our state,” said Governor Murphy. “By bolstering protections against potential repercussions for both health care professionals and patients, we are sending a message to all who seek or provide reproductive health care within our borders that we welcome and support you. These laws represent our commitment to standing by a woman’s right to make her own decisions about her body, and will serve to make our state a beacon of freedom to every woman in America.”

“While the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs may be among the most devastating and profoundly wrong rulings in American history, it will not stop us from using every available tool to continue protecting the right to choose,” said Acting Attorney General Matthew J. Platkin. “These two critical laws further our commitment to protecting abortion rights for New Jersey residents and anyone else who comes to our State seeking care. These laws also provide critical protections for health care providers and for patients’ privacy. I am grateful for Governor Murphy’s commitment to protecting women’s rights and reproductive freedom, and I am grateful to the Legislature for passing these important bills.”

The state provided the following information in a press release on Friday:

The legislation establishes protections for patients and providers.  For patients, the legislation helps ensure residents of other states who seek reproductive health care in New Jersey can access confidential care without fear of prosecution.  For providers, the legislation insulates healthcare practitioners from New Jersey-initiated disciplinary actions based on the provision of reproductive health care, including abortion, that is legal in New Jersey.

The first bill (A-3975/S-2633) would generally prevent the disclosure of a patient’s medical records related to reproductive health care without their consent in any civil, probate, legislative or administrative proceeding. It would also prohibit public entities and employees from cooperating with interstate investigations aiming to hold someone liable for seeking, receiving, facilitating, or providing reproductive health care services that are legal in New Jersey.

It would further protect providers by prohibiting New Jersey licensing boards from suspending, revoking, or refusing to renew the license or registration of a professional based solely on their involvement in the provision of reproductive health care services.

The second bill (A-3974/S-2642) would prevent the extradition of an individual within New Jersey to another state for receiving, providing, or facilitating reproductive health care services that are legal in New Jersey.

Primary sponsors of both bills include Senators Nia Gill, Nellie Pou, and Gordon Johnson, and Assembly members Lisa Swain, Mila Jasey, and Raj Mukherji.