About New Yorkers For Life
In 2018, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo tried a new tactic to force legislators to expand late-term abortion: he tied it to a host of other “women’s issues,” and packaged it within his Executive Budget proposal. The Governor’s Article VII “Women’s Agenda” budget bill (S.7511/A.9511) includes a section which decriminalizes all abortions in New York State. In doing so, the bill would:
- Eliminate New York’s current ban on most abortions after 24 weeks of pregnancy, allowing abortion for any reason, at any time, and by any means in our state;
- Empower non-doctors to perform abortions;
- Remove protections for involuntary or coerced abortions; and
- Legalize infanticide by removing the duty in current law for health providers to provide medical care to any infant who is born alive during an abortion.
None of this has fiscal implications or has anything to do with New York’s budget plan. Nevertheless, the Governor has packaged this horrific proposal within the budget to force negotiation of this issue with legislative leaders. A final state budget is due by April 1, 2018.
New Yorkers for Life remains committed to challenging the Governor’s abortion expansion agenda, no matter what form it might take. We are a diverse, statewide coalition formed to protect and respect women, children and all innocent human lives from the first moment of their creation to their natural end. Here’s a bit of our history.
In his 2013 State of the State Address, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo declared his enthusiastic support for a bill that would expand access to late-term abortion. New Yorkers for Life was birthed to challenge the Governor’s abortion expansion agenda, and, in so doing, to protect vulnerable unborn children.
Initially, New Yorkers for Life focused its efforts on blocking the passage of the abortion expansion bill known as the Reproductive Health Act (RHA). However, in an effort to pressure legislators into voting in favor of abortion expansion legislation, Gov. Cuomo and his allies drafted a modified abortion expansion bill and linked it to nine other proposals that affect women. The combined ten-point package is known as the Women’s Equality Act. The New York State Assembly passed the WEA by a wide margin in 2013. The New York State Senate, on the other hand, passed the nine non-abortion-related parts of the WEA, but declined to bring the abortion expansion bill to a vote. On the final day of the 2013 legislative session, pro-abortion senators attempted a procedural maneuver that would have attached abortion expansion legislation to another bill; following intense lobbying efforts by New Yorkers for Life and its supporting organizations, this attempt failed by a razor-thin margin of 31-32.
On the first day of the 2015 legislative session, the State Senate again passed the non-abortion-related parts of the WEA, but declined to bring the abortion expansion bill to a vote. In a major pro-life victory, the Assembly agreed to break up the ten-point package and start passing the individual bills. On March 25, 2015 the Assembly passed stand-alone abortion expansion legislation (A.6221 – Glick/S.4432 – Stewart-Cousins) by a vote of 95-51; thankfully, however, this bill is going nowhere in the Senate.
In 2015, a new front emerged in the ongoing battle over the sanctity of human life: Physician-assisted suicide. Multiple bills to legalize physician-assisted suicide have been introduced in the New York State Legislature, and national organizations are involved in promoting them. While Senate Republican Leader Dean Skelos (R-Nassau) has stated his opposition to physician-assisted suicide, New Yorkers for Life is concerned about these bills because of the media attention this issue is receiving and because of the well-funded support for so-called “death with dignity.”
New Yorkers for Life is a coalition effort that is primarily led by coalition partner New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms (NYCF), New York’s evangelical Christian advocacy organization. New Yorkers for Life was initially formed as a single-issue coalition focused on opposition to abortion expansion. As of 2015, New Yorkers for Life has broadened its focus to include opposition to physician-assisted suicide. Today, we are a diverse, statewide coalition formed to protect and respect innocent human life from its beginning to its natural end.