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Vail Resorts' new abortion policy means PCMR employees are covered

Skiers and snowboarders move to get on a lift in Park City on Jan. 11, at Vail-owned Park City Mountain Resort. Vail Resorts announced on Wednesday that it will expand its medical plan to support women seeking abortion, including a travel reimbursement package should the employee need to travel out of the state.

Skiers and snowboarders move to get on a lift in Park City on Jan. 11, at Vail-owned Park City Mountain Resort. Vail Resorts announced on Wednesday that it will expand its medical plan to support women seeking abortion, including a travel reimbursement package should the employee need to travel out of the state. (Scott G Winterton, Deseret News)



Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

PARK CITY — Ski area conglomerate Vail Resorts announced Wednesday it will expand its medical plan to support women seeking an abortion, including a travel reimbursement package should the employee need to go out of state.

Vail is based in Colorado but operates in several states where access to abortion is now severely curtailed, including Utah where a trigger law passed in 2020 bans the procedure except when the mother's life is at risk, the pregnancy was a result of rape or incest, or two doctors determine the fetus has a diagnosable abnormality defined by the law.

The trigger law is currently blocked by a judge but the 18-week ban is now in effect.

If Utah's law takes effect, employees at Park City Mountain Resort, one of the largest ski areas in the U.S., will have to travel to Nevada or Colorado if they are seeking an abortion not permitted in the state.

But under Vail's new policy, the abortion will be covered by the company's medical plan. The employee will also be eligible for a $4,000 travel reimbursement.

"We have tens of thousands of teammates in the U.S. spread across 16 states who now, because of the Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, will have varying access to reproductive healthcare," the company posted on its Twitter account. "We believe everyone is entitled to make choices about their own reproductive health, no matter where they live."

Park City is the only Vail-operated resort in the West located in a state where lawmakers have passed a trigger law banning most abortions. The conglomerate operates 41 resorts around the world, including some in Missouri, Wisconsin, Michigan, Indiana and Ohio, where state lawmakers have already taken, or are expected to take, action to restrict abortion access.

"Our team is at the core of our mission and we remain committed to ensuring they have the resources and support they need to be healthy and safe," the statement from Vail reads.

Vail is the latest outdoor company with a presence in Utah to push back against the state's tight abortion restrictions. It joins Patagonia and REI, outdoor apparel companies that made headlines after condemning the reduction of Bears Ears National Monument, a move supported by many Utah politicians.

REI stated employees "can access the reproductive healthcare they need, regardless of where they live," and Patagonia will post bail for employees arrested at an abortion rights protest.

Goldman Sachs, Macy's, Dick's Sporting Goods, Starbucks and Kroger have also made similar statements or policies.

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Kyle Dunphey
Kyle Dunphey is a reporter on the Utah InDepth team, covering a mix of topics including politics, the environment and breaking news. A Vermont native, he studied communications at the University of Utah and graduated in 2020. Whether on his skis or his bike, you can find Kyle year-round exploring Utah’s mountains.

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