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Northern Virginia governments take steps to protect abortion rights

Fairfax County is putting together a webpage on reproductive resources and facilities while Alexandria City Council passes a resolution to protect abortion rights.

FAIRFAX COUNTY, Va. — As Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin and other Republicans look to restrict abortions, some local jurisdictions are working to protect abortion rights and educate people on what Friday’s Supreme Court ruling means for them.

Fairfax County Supervisors passed a Board Matter Tuesday to have staff create a website with information on reproductive resources, services, and facilities available to Fairfax County residents. The website is set to go live this week.

Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeffrey McKay proposed the measure after he said people had been asking what Friday’s Supreme Court ruling meant for them.

“I think a lot of folks believe that abortion cannot be accessed in Virginia right now and in fact that’s untrue,” McKay said. “Nothing changed. That doesn’t mean the General Assembly and Governor can’t do something in the future, but you know women in particular in Fairfax County need to know what their rights are and what services already exist to help them.”

RELATED: Alexandria City Council fights to protect abortion rights with unanimously voted resolution

On Tuesday the Alexandria City Council passed a resolution to protect abortion rights. During a comment from Vice Mayor Amy Jackson protesters yelled back and were escorted out of the chamber.

McKay stressed if things change politically in Virginia it could have more than emotional and health ramifications.

“It’s very much a local government issue. We’re one of the largest employers in Virginia, so I have to look at it from the perspective of the health care plans for our own employees,” McKay said. “We’re interested in economic development. I know businesses and others that won’t come to a state that has cut off reproductive rights and services for women so that’s an economic development issue as a county and then of course we provide a lot of human services for people who are in need.”

RELATED: Virginia governor wants to tighten abortion laws following Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade

McKay said if abortion laws change in Virginia there’s no doubt in his mind some businesses would leave.

“There are more issues than the emotional issues that women and girls are feeling right now about not being treated equally in the United States, and that is something I’ve never seen before in my lifetime,” McKay said.

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