A closer look at new protections for abortion rights here in New York

Regional News

The Reproductive Health Act passed in the New York State Senate and Assembly on Tuesday. 

When it passed, the gallery erupted into cheers for about 20 seconds. After it died down, some protesters screamed out as well.

The bill protects abortion rights in the state’s health law as opposed to penal codes. It allows for late-term abortions after 24 weeks if the mother’s life is at risk or if the fetus is nonviable.

This has been a goal of the legislature now that the Senate is no longer Republican controlled. Similar bills had failed in the past.

The previous law was passed in 1970, three years before Roe v Wade. NEWS10 ABC has been told this is an update to the outdated law.

Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the bill into law Tuesday evening and the reaction continues to pour in.

“If we as a New York State don’t value life in the womb does your life matter, does my life matter?”
Liz Joy with the Republican Women of Schenectady County says the law will mean more late-term abortions.

Emma Corbett with Planned Parenthood says 89-percent of abortions happen before the 12-week mark. The new law maintains abortions are legal up to 24 weeks and after in rare and circumstantial cases.

“Often, when we look at late-term abortions, it’s often a very wanted pregnancy, some other health crisis or extenuating health circumstances come up where that care needs to be administered. To kind of look at these isolate incidences as though they’re going to become the norm is really inaccurate and not something that we’re seeing at our health centers,” she said

The New York State Catholic Conference saying, “Let us all pray for the conversion of heart for those who celebrate this tragic moment in the history of our state. And we pray in a special way for the lives that will be lost, and for the women of our state who are made less safe under this law.”

FULL TEXT: Read the full text of the Reproductive Health Act

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