DENVER (KDVR) – On June 24, the U.S. Supreme Court delivered the decision in Dobbs v. Jackson’s Women’s Health Organization, which essentially stripped away the right to abortion on the federal level, overturning a nearly 50-year-old precedent.
In response to this decision, on Wednesday afternoon, Gov. Jared Polis signed an executive order to ensure that reproductive health care options remain available across the state of Colorado, specifically, access to abortion.
This comes a few months after Polis signed the Reproductive Health Equity Act back in early April, which codified abortion rights into state law.
Executive Order D 2022 032 “directs the Department of Regulatory Affairs to protect people working in the state from any disciplinary action against a professional license for providing or seeking reproductive health care in Colorado or any other state,” according to the governor’s office.
“In the wake of the wrong and misguided decision in Dobbs, numerous states have moved and will move to ban abortion outright, and many other states already have ‘trigger laws’ that will ban abortion within 30 days of the Dobbs decision,” the order states.
According to the order, the state will refuse to cooperate with any out-of-state civil or criminal investigations into legal health decisions in Colorado.
“This impending loss of freedom for people around the country poses a threat to the people of Colorado to the extent that other states may seek to infringe on essential rights protected by Colorado law, and impose criminal penalties or civil liability for conduct that is now outlawed in other states, but remains legal in Colorado,” the order states.
Back in 1967, then-Gov. John Love made Colorado the first state in the country to remove criminal penalties for people who received abortions. The signing of this executive order is a continuation of that effort.
“I will exercise the full extent of my discretion to decline requests for the arrest, surrender, or extradition of any person charged with a criminal violation of a law of another state where the violation alleged involves the provision of, assistance with, securing of, or receipt of reproductive health care, unless the acts forming the basis of the prosecution of the crime charged would also constitute a criminal offense under Colorado law,” the order states.
You can read the executive order’s full text here.