Game and entertainment companies react after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade

Following the Supreme Court’s decision this morning to overturn the landmark abortion rights decision Roe v. Wade, video game and entertainment companies are beginning to speak out against the ruling and in favor of the right to abortion. reproductive freedom.

Having previously issued a statement of support when the decision was leaked early in May, Bungie has updated its blog post about the subject to announce that they are implementing a travel reimbursement program for employees and their dependents to access reproductive health care that may not be available in their state. surname.

Previously, Bungie had also encouraged her audience to donate to charities including URGE (United for Reproduction & Gender Equality), Religious Alliance for Reproductive Choice, NARAL Pro Foundation -Choice America, In Our Own Voice and Trans Lifeline to help support the right to essential health care.

Bungie CEO Pete Parsons also tweeted the following about the decision:

“This is a difficult day for our country. Good people will be hurt by this decision. Bungie will do whatever it can to protect our people and make sure they can. live a happy, healthy life.”

Bungie is not alone in speaking out. Insomniac Games also tweeted a statement, “We are the humans who make games. Reproductive freedom and bodily autonomy are human rights.”

Sony Santa Monica also tweeted a few hours later: “We believe that bodily autonomy and reproductive freedom are fundamental human rights. Santa Monica Studio will continue to uphold these values. and help our team members access the care they need.”

And Naughty Dog, Guerrilla, Bend Studio, PlayStation London, Media Molecule and Sucker Punch have also spoken out in similar language:

These statements are remarkable from the point of view of parent company Sony (and soon Bungie). when draft comments were first leaked earlier this year. At the time, PlayStation president Jim Ryan asked PlayStation employees to “respect differences of opinion” and reportedly discouraged internal studios from making public statements. Insomniac was pushed back internally, resulting in both Insomniac and PlayStation donating $50,000 each to the Women’s Reproductive Rights Support Project (WRRAP).

Innersloth developers among us have also engaged with affiliations with a number of reproductive and essential healthcare providers, along with a statement of our own:

“Innersloth advocates reproductive choice and freedom. Ending the constitutional right to abortion is a gender, racial, economic and human rights disaster for both present and future generations. There are so many. support local people and organizations. If you can, let them know your voice, your time, your actions, your money or your privilege. We stand with all those affected.”

Devolver Digital, the publisher of games like Card Shark, Inscryption, and Death’s Door, shared the following brief quote:

And the creator of Guild Wars 2 ArenaNet, one of the first companies to speak out when the original draft ruling was leaked, also reiterated his support:

Ubisoft also tweeted in support of reproductive rights and also pointed out a longer statement penned by HR director Anika Grant and VP of Global Diversity and Inclusion Raashi Sikka from June 15 represents support not only for reproductive freedom but for the LGBTQ+ community in the context of authoritarianism. potential impact of this decision.

“On behalf of Yves and the entire Ubisoft leadership team, we want to make it clear: at Ubisoft, we believe that women’s rights are human rights, transgender rights are human rights and equal rights. Equality for all is essential to creating a world where everyone can be who they are and thrive,” the longer statement read. It goes on to reiterate that it is reviewing benefits packages for US employees to ensure that LGBTQ+ women and workers and their families “will have access to quality health care.” [they] need.”

EA member AAA publishers did not make a clear statement against inversion to conform to Internal reports are reported first that it “incites all views” and therefore will not make a public statement in any way. However, it published a letter it sent out to employees today announcing that it will also offer expanded travel health benefits following the ruling and encourage employees to participate in the company’s social impact programs.

More and more companies joined them throughout the day, including AAA developers like Bethesda and Niantic:

And smaller and medium-sized developers, such as Unbroken Studios, Airship Syndicate, comrade meat, Cold Iron Studio, It’s No Moon, future club, and Hi-Rez Studios.

In addition to the individual studios and publishers, the International Game Developers Association (IGDA) also released a statement, along with a list of recommended resources for reproductive rights, care and support. , including the Center for Reproductive Rights, Human Rights Watch, Planned Parenthood, the National Center for Women’s Law, and the United States of America. Its statement is as follows:

The International Game Developers Association supports and empowers game developers worldwide in achieving fulfilling and sustainable careers. We believe that bodily autonomy and choice over one’s own fertility and health care matters are relevant to achieving this mission. One must take control of their own health problems in order to successfully manage their career and life.
As a global organization, we understand that not all individuals experience or have access to the freedoms and liberties associated with bodily autonomy, and we oppose these attempt to undermine existing liberties. We are deeply concerned by increased government interventions that undermine and limit reproductive choice and access to care. We applaud and show solidarity with the gaming industry and community leaders who are taking action to support all those negatively impacted by these efforts.

And in the tech space, Bloomberg reporter Mark Gurman shared a statement from Apple claiming that Apple’s benefits for helping employees find reproductive health care may not be available in the states. their.

Gaming isn’t the only space for action. While major entertainment companies have so far declined to issue statements, reports indicate that some are issuing statements to employees and providing healthcare assistance.

Based on The Hollywood Reporter, Netflix is ​​offering a $10,000 lifetime stipend to reimburse for travel, among other things, gender-confirmed care and abortions. In an email to employees, Paramount CEO Bob Bakish reminded them that the company’s health policies include coverage for travel-related expenses “if the medical service is covered.” life expectancy, such as abortion, is prohibited in your area.” And Warner Bros. Discovery appears to be expanding its healthcare benefits to “include costs for employees and their insured family members who need to travel to access a wide range of medical procedures.” health, including abortion care, family planning and reproductive health.”

On a diverse report on the same topic, Meta, Sony and Conde Nast are also offering or considering travel refunds. And Disney has expressed a commitment to employees to provide access to family and reproductive care “no matter where they live.”

Hollywood unions have also spoken out. A report from The Hollywood Reporter revealed that the Directors Guild of America, SAG-AFTRA, the Writers Guild of America, IATSE and Actors Equity have all issued statements to their members offering to support reproductive freedom for members. their rights, while demanding legislative action to codify abortion rights.

In a joint statement, the WGA East and West board of directors condemned the ruling:

“Once again, this court has chosen to ignore public opinion and invade the privacy and health of a large portion of the American population,” the statement read. “This decision will result in injury, death, and denial of basic human rights that allow Americans to live the lives they choose without fear of interference or bodily harm. Now, we directed to states to enforce existing laws or act to pass new laws to protect against erroneous and harmful decisions of the Supreme Court”.

It is likely that we will see other similar gaming and entertainment companies launch public support in large numbers that have spoken out. when draft comments were first leaked. We will continue to update this article as more statement of the issue becomes available.

Rebekah Valentine is an IGN news reporter. You can find her on Twitter @duckvalentine.

Updated 6/24/2022 2:12 pm: This section has been updated after publication to include statements from the Director Guild of America, SAG-AFTRA, Writers Guild of America, IATSE, Actors Equity, PlayStation London , Ubisoft, Media Molecule, ArenaNet, EA, Bethesda, Niantic, Unbroken Studios, Airship Syndicate, Team Meat, Cold Iron Studios, That No Moon, Future Club and Hi-Rez Studios.

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