SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – It’s only a small 12-by-6-inch plate, but it’s causing big controversy by going pro-choice.
A bill introduced would allow drivers to purchase a specialty plate making it the first politically motivated offering in California.
“This is probably going to be a big thing, a big issue, but I think it’s a good one to put out there,” said Lindsay Molineaux of Sacramento.
Right now there are 14 specialty plates you can choose from in the state and some of the funds generated go towards non-profit organizations.
This new pro-choice plate would raise money for reproductive health care.
“Our values will be heard and we will be able to assist in funding critical programs for men and women throughout the state,” said state Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson (D-Santa Barbara).
Jackson introduced the bill and said it’s time California trusts women to make their own decisions.
“A notion that we would have to ask permission or that we should be expected to ask permission or have strange white men in DC making personal decisions about our reproductive decisions is just simply appalling,” she said.
But not everyone agrees.
“I think that’s going to open up a whole Pandora’s box and if you open that up people are going to be politically motivated to spew other things and I don’t think that’s correct. I’m all for Planned Parenthood, but I don’t think you should open up that door,” said Amanda Delfin of Sacramento.
Other opponents who are pro-life are worried about the message it’s sending.
“We know that calling this reproductive is, in fact, a code word for human abortion and there’s nothing reproductive in the act of human abortion,” said Brian Johnston with the California Pro-Life Council.
Californians interested in pledging to purchase a plate should the bill be signed into law can now do so on Jackson’s website. Thousands of pledges have already been received, as well as postcards in support of the bill from around the country.
SB 309, which would require that the Department of Motor Vehicles issue a “California Trusts Women” license plate once 7,500 Californians order them, is now in the Senate Appropriations Committee.
Three California-based artists were commissioned to design a license plate which, should SB 309 pass, would be a visible way for Californians to show their opposition to Trump and federal anti-choice policies, while raising funding for the Family Planning, Access, Care, and Treatment Program, which provides family planning services to 1.8 million Californians every year.
The optional license plate will cost $50 in the first year, and $40 thereafter.