NY Governor to Include Abortion Rights in Women's Equality Act
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) will include a section on expanding and protecting abortion rights in the state of New York as part of a Women's Equality Act.
The Reproductive Health Act would expand the conditions under which a woman could have a late abortion in the state to include when the mother's health is in jeopardy or the fetus is not viable in addition to cases to save the life of the mother. This would bring New York state law on late term in sync with federal regulations. The act would also allow licensed health care practitioners to perform abortions and remove abortion from the New York penal code and place it under regulation by the state's public health law.
According to an anonymous Cuomo official, one reason for the Reproductive Health Act is to protect a woman's right to choose in case the historic Roe v. Wade decision were to be overturned.
Cuomo has insisted that the Reproductive Health Act should not be treated separately from the Women's Equality Act, which is reportedly a 10-point piece of legislation that would provide equal pay for equal work, workplace protections against discrimination, and measures against violence against women. In Cuomo's "State of the Union" New York address, he said, "Maybe it's a man's world, but it is not a man's world in New York. Not anymore."
Media Resources: MSNBC 2/18/2013; New York Times 2/16/2013; Feminist Newswire 1/30/2013
8/28/2015 Alaska Court Protects Abortion Access for Low-Income Women - The Alaska Superior Court struck down a state law yesterday that would have severely limited abortion access for low-income women in Alaska.
The state's Superior Court also struck down a Department of Health and Social Services regulation that placed narrow specifications on Medicaid coverage for abortions, requiring that Medicaid-funded abortions be determined by a physician to be "medically necessary." Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood sued on behalf of the Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, claiming that the narrow definition of "medically necessary" arbitrarily established conditions designed to restrict the ability of low-income women to access abortion services.
The law was temporarily blocked last July by an Alaskan state court judge.
Superior Court Judge John Suddock ordered yesterday that the state be blocked from implementing this regulation, ruling that it placed an undue burden on low-income women seeking abortion services in Alaska.
"By providing health care to all poor Alaskans except women who need abortions, the challenged regulation violates the state constitutional guarantee of 'equal rights, opportunities, and protection under the law'," the ruling read.
"We applaud the superior court for striing down these cruel restrictions on women's health and rights that violate the Alaska Constitution," said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands. . . .
8/26/2015 Saudi Women Prepare to Vote for the First Time - The fight for gender equality is making slow but notable progress in Saudi Arabia, where women will be allowed to vote for the first time in upcoming December elections.
This shift in Saudi law came in 2011, when a royal decree announced that women would be allowed to vote and run in local elections beginning in December of 2015. . . .