Several video game studios are speaking out and taking a stand to protect the reproductive rights of their employees in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade on Friday.
Destiny 2 studio Bungie announced in a blog post that it has added “Travel Reimbursement for Unavailable Healthcare” as a benefit for employees and their families. The move would protect employees who need to travel to states where abortion is still legal if they live in a state with laws on the books saying otherwise. Thirteen states have trigger laws that could immediately ban abortion as soon as today in the wake of the decision, including Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, Oklahoma, Tennessee, North and South Dakota, and Idaho.
“Bungie is committed to ensuring that every one of our employees and their families have safe and affordable access to essential health care needs,” the company writes. “As we continue to expand our digital-first workplace to more states, we will now be implementing a travel reimbursement program for any employee to use when they or a dependent cannot get access to the health care they need where they live. We remain undeterred in our commitment to stand up for reproductive choice and liberty.”
Bungie was the first video game studio to speak out on abortion rights after SCOTUS’ draft opinion on its decision to roll them back leaked out to the public last month. At the time, it said the decision “represents a blow to freedom in America and is a direct attack on human rights,” and it outlined its promises to protect those freedoms for its employees.
Meanwhile, other game studios have taken to social media against SCOTUS’ decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, releasing unanimous statements supporting reproductive rights, including Insomniac Games, Sucker Punch, PlayStation London Studio, Ubisoft, Santa Monica Studio, and Naughty Dog.
— Insomniac Games (@insomniacgames) June 24, 2022
— Ubisoft (@Ubisoft) June 24, 2022
— Naughty Dog (@Naughty_Dog) June 24, 2022
Other gaming companies have yet to weigh in on the situation, including PlayStation (though several of its subsidiaries have responded). Last month, Sony CEO Jim Ryan encouraged neutrality on abortion by emailing employees to respect others’ opinions after the draft opinion leaked, sparking outrage among employees and PlayStation fans who expected more out of a company that took a stand on other issues, including Black Lives Matter and Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine.