Lawmakers look to pass reproductive health legislation

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ALBANY, NY (WENY) — In a post-Roe era, some state lawmakers took steps to break down reproductive health barriers.

This week the senate passed four bills that would provide funding and further protections for reproductive healthcare providers, dispense self-administered hormonal contraceptives, and provide further transparency to the public on hospitals with policy based exclusions.

“Every step that we take in a post roe world towards greater reproductive freedom and justice is monumental. There is no small deed when the stakes are this high,” said Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D-35th Senate District).

And some lawmakers said that funding is a key element to protecting reproductive freedoms not just for New Yorkers but for people looking for sanctuary from other states.

“New York State has been a sanctuary for people to come. We want to make sure we have the resources we need to service those women who will be traveling here as well as the women who are here,” said Sen. Cordell Cleare (D-30th Senate District).

Sen. Cleare’s bill would enact a reproductive freedom and equity grant program to provide state funding to abortion providers.

Other lawmakers said that contraception is another key element to reproductive justice. Sen. Toby Ann Stavisky’s bill permits licensed pharmacists to dispense birth control medications and devices without a patient specific prescription.

All four reproductive health bills passed in the senate Tuesday. They will now go to the assembly floor for a vote. If the assembly passes these bills in the same language, they will then go to Gov. Kathy Hochul’s desk for her signature.


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