NARAL Pro-Choice New York
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Pass the Reproductive Health Act

The Reproductive Health Act is a groundbreaking proposal in New York that will fix a troubling gap in New York State's abortion law. It will guarantee a woman's right to access abortion care in New York, especially if her health is in danger. It will ensure that a woman is able to access safe, legal abortion care right here in New York if her health is at risk later in pregnancy. The Reproductive Health Act will also remove abortion from the state criminal code and put it in the health code, where it belongs. 

Take Action

 
You can support the RHA in several ways:
 
  1. Sign the petition to support the Women's Equality Act, which includes the Reproductive Health Act.
  2. Send Governor Cuomo an email thanking him for pushing the Women's Equality Act.
  3. Attend a Pro-Choice Lobby Day in Albany. Join us for a day of educational workshops, advocacy trainings, and meetings with your legislative representatives as we speak out for reproductive health and rights.
  4. Sign up for action alerts. Stay on top of all the breaking news in New York State legislation by joining our Choice Action Network.
  5. Write a letter to your elected officials. Tell them why you support the RHA and ask them to do the same.
  6. Write a letter to the editor. Convince readers in your area of the need to pass the RHA. See our guide for tips.
  7. Get your organization to sign on. Work at an organization that supports women's health and rights? Sign your organization onto the list of groups that support passing the RHA. For a complete list of supporting organizations, see below or here.
 

Why We Need the Reproductive Health Act

 
  1. New Yorkers overwhelmingly support a woman's right to decide when and whether to have a child. In fact, three-quarters of New York voters support the Reproductive Health Act - even after hearing arguments against the bill.*
  2. New York's law is outdated and inadequate. After almost 40 years, times have changed but our state law still regulates abortion in the criminal code and lacks protections if a women's health is endangered.
  3. New York is not secure in relying on the federal protections provided by Roe. State legislatures across the country have enacted over 450 bills that would ban or restrict abortion, some of which are a direct challenge to Roe v. Wade. All it takes is one of these challenges to reach the Supreme Court, and Roe could be overturned.
  4. Seven states have already passed laws like the Reproductive Health Act. New York needs to reclaim our rightful place as a pro-choice leader by passing the bill.
  5. The majority of voters would vote for a candidate who supports this bill.* It's time for the New York State Legislature to listen to constituent voices and support the Reproductive Health Act.
 
*NARAL Pro-Choice New York commissioned Global Strategy Group to conduct a survey of registered voters in New York State. The margin of error on the overall sample is +/-3.5%.
 

Women's Stories


Ilene Jaroslaw
"When I became pregnant with my third child, everything looked good in early tests. About 17 weeks into my pregnancy, however, a sonogram showed that part of my baby's brain was missing and she or he would not survive. Because of previous health complications, an abortion was the only option to protect my health and my fertility. I think it's important to talk about this because while abortion should be a personal decision, politicians try to interfere. I can't imagine what my family and I would have gone through if abortion weren't safe and legal."

Marion Banzhaf
"When I got pregnant my freshman year of college, it was 1971. I knew I wasn’t ready to have a child, but I was in Florida where abortion was not yet legal, and it was also illegal to print any information about abortion. Since Roe was not yet the law of the land, one of the only places where you could get a legal abortion was New York. New York was at the forefront of protecting women’s rights when I needed help. Our state needs to once again take the lead when it comes to ensuring reproductive justice."

Morgan Cousins
"I was surprised when I found out I was pregnant. It was a humbling moment that challenged everything I thought I knew about who I am. After talking with close friends and family, I decided that who I am could also include being a mother. My decision to continue my pregnancy was not easy to make. I knew that any decision would change my life. The fact is, my decision is more meaningful because I had the choice. It is simply a human right to choose what your path in life should look like. I couldn't imagine living in a world where I had no choice at all."

 

Community Support 



Janice Tenant, Voter
"I was surprised when I found out I was pregnant. It was a humbling moment that challenged everything I thought I knew about who I am. After talking with close friends and family, I decided that who I am could also include being a mother. My decision to continue my pregnancy was not easy to make. I knew that any decision would change my life. The fact is, my decision is more meaningful because I had the choice. It is simply a human right to choose what your path in life should look like. I couldn't imagine living in a world where I had no choice at all."

 

Memos of Support

 
Several organizations are working to pass the Reproductive Health Act this legislative season. The following groups have issued memos of support for the Reproductive Health Act:
 
  • NARAL Pro-Choice New York Memo of Support [pdf]
  • Family Planning Advocates of New York State Memo of Support [pdf]
  • New York Civil Liberties Union Memo of Support [pdf]
  • Reform Jewish Voice of New York State Memo of Support [pdf]
 

List of Organizations that Support the Reproductive Health Act

 
  • American College of Nurse Midwives, New York City Chapter
  • Community Healthcare Network
  • Family Planning Advocates of New York State
  • NARAL Pro-Choice New York
  • National Association of Social Workers, New York State Chapter
  • National Organization for Women-NYC
  • National Organization for Women-NYS
  • New York City Alliance Against Sexual Assault
  • New York Civil Liberties Union
  • New York Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice
  • New York State Academy of Family Physicians
  • New York State Association for Licensed Midwives
  • New York State Nurses Association
  • Northern Adirondack Planned Parenthood
  • Nurse Practitioners of New York
  • Physicians for Reproductive Choice and Health
  • Planned Parenthood Hudson Peconic
  • Planned Parenthood Mohawk Hudson
  • Planned Parenthood of Mid-Hudson Valley
  • Planned Parenthood of Nassau County
  • Planned Parenthood of New York City
  • Planned Parenthood of Northern New York
  • Planned Parenthood of South Central New York
  • Planned Parenthood of the Rochester/Syracuse Region
  • Planned Parenthood of the Southern Finger Lakes
  • Planned Parenthood of Western New York
  • Public Health Association of New York City
  • Public Health Solutions
  • Reform Jewish Voice
  • Upper Hudson Planned Parenthood
  • WCLA – Choice Matters
  • Women's Bar Association
  • Women's City Club
 
Updated on April 26, 2012
 
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