An Eli Lilly and Company pharmaceutical manufacturing plant is pictured at 50 ImClone Drive in Branchburg, New Jersey, March 5, 2021.
Mike Segar | Reuters
Drugmaker Eli Lilly, one of Indiana’s largest employers, said the state’s recently passed law restricting abortion will cause the company to expand far from its home.
Lilly said in a statement Saturday that it recognizes abortion as a “divisive and deeply personal issue with no clear consensus among the citizens of Indiana.”
“Despite the lack of agreement, Indiana chose to quickly adopt one of the most restrictive anti-abortion laws in the United States,” said Eli Lilly. “We are concerned that this law will hinder Lilly’s – and Indiana’s – ability to attract diverse scientific, engineering and business talent from around the world. Given this new law, we will be forced to plan for more employment growth outside of our state.” “
Indiana Legislature on Friday became the first in the country to pass new legislation restricting access to abortion since the US Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. The state was among the first Republican-led state legislatures to debate tougher abortion laws after the Supreme Court ruled in June that stripped constitutional protections for the procedure.
Lilly employs approximately 10,000 people in Indiana, where it has been headquartered in Indianapolis for more than 145 years.
It joins a growing list of companies, including tech giant Apple and jeans retailer Levi Strauss, that offer employees resources for reproductive care in states where restrictions have been put in place.
Eli Lilly noted on Saturday that although the drug company has expanded its employee health plan coverage to include travel for reproductive services, “this may not be enough for some current and potential employees.”
Indiana’s abortion ban is expected to take effect on September 15. It comes with some exceptions, including in cases of rape or incest, and to protect the life of the mother.
President Joe Biden’s administration also condemned the Indiana decision. White House press secretary Karin Jean-Pierre called it a “disastrous step.”
“And, it’s another radical step by Republican lawmakers to take away women’s reproductive rights and freedom and put personal health care decisions in the hands of politicians rather than women and their doctors,” she said. he said in a statement.