(The Center Square) – Colorado state agencies cannot cooperate with other states’ abortion-related investigations under a new executive order signed Wednesday by Gov. Jared Polis.
The order says state agencies should not “provide information or data” to other states for investigations “related to providing, assisting, seeking, or obtaining reproductive health care.”
The order also authorizes the Department of Regulatory Affairs to protect licensed professionals from retaliatory actions for providing or assisting in reproductive health care procedures such as abortions.
“This Executive Order ensures that all Coloradans are afforded protections and rights under Colorado law and directs state agencies and departments managed by Governor-appointed executives to protect access to reproductive health care in Colorado within their authority under the law,” the executive order reads.
Colorado is among states that opted to fully allow abortions while other states have restricted access in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson. The case overturned Roe v. Wade, which provided a constitutional right to seek an abortion.
State lawmakers codified the right to abortions in Colorado when they passed the Reproductive Health Equity Act during the last legislative session.
“We are taking needed action to protect and defend individual freedom and protect the privacy of Coloradans,” Polis said in a statement. “This important step will ensure that Colorado’s thriving economy and workforce are not impacted based on personal health decisions that are wrongly being criminalized in other states.”
State health organizations and Democratic lawmakers applauded Polis for issuing the executive order.
“Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains (PPRM) is so proud to provide care in states that take decisive action to secure reproductive freedom,” said Adrienne Mansanares, President and CEO of PPRM. “Today’s executive order makes two things very clear: If you are a patient seeking abortion care, you are safe and welcome in Colorado.”
Sen. Julie Gonzales, D-Denver, on of the Reproductive Health Equity Act’s sponsors, said in response to the order that “this is a crucial time in which we all must do everything that we can to defend these fundamental rights.”