April 8, 2022

New York State Pregnancy Resource Centers STILL Need Your Help!

“…in this affluent nation of ours, pregnant cattle and horses receive better health care than pregnant poor women. The poor cry out for justice and we respond with legalized abortion.”—Graciela Olivarez, civil rights and poverty activist, first woman and first Latina graduate of Notre Dame Law School

One year ago, we alerted you, along with all of our other New York supporters, about a bill that would likely put many pregnancy resource centers out of business. A5499/S470 is an anti-choice, anti-woman bill that would cripple pregnancy resource centers with unnecessary paperwork, and we urged you to tell your legislators to vote against it. You did, and the bill was not taken up that session.

But this past Monday, the Assembly passed the bill, A5499, and now, its Senate version, S470, is lodged in the Women’s Issues Committee.

FFL President Serrin M. Foster, who was raised as a child in Upstate New York, asks, “What about the resources that support marital, single, and partnered parenthood; or kinship care and guardianship; or open, closed, and semi-open adoption? Pregnancy resource centers give a gift of a lifetime. This draconian effort targets women who seek to explore these choices and find resources that support their choice.”

Pregnancy resource centers are there to help women navigate their options. Many of these centers have staff or volunteers who speak more than one language.

Financial services available include:• Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, previously known as food stamps)• Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF)• WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) Nutrition Program• Medicaid

Direct services available include:• Clothing, housing, furniture, and temporary shelter• Medical care, including high-risk pregnancy services andhelp for victims of domestic violence

Other services available include:• Guidance in informing the child’s father and her parents• Legal assistance, including obtaining child support• Help with employment, education, domestic violence,and addictions• Childbirth, breastfeeding, and parenting classes• Postpartum counseling and assistance• Adoption counseling

“Ask yourself,” Foster added. “If these centers are forced to close, where will pregnant women go for all of these services? They are staffed by dedicated volunteers and medical and legal professionals, who often serve pro bono.”

Please call and email your senator to say no to the anti-choice, anti-woman bill, S470, which you can read here.
You can contact your senator to note your opposition here.

We especially need those of you who are represented by the following key senators to reach out to them:

Joseph P. Addabbo: addabbo@nysenate.gov; Simcha Felder: felder@nysenate.gov; Pamela Helming: helming@nysenate.gov; Daphne Jordan*: jordan@nysenate.gov

When you address your senator, please let her or him know:

  • We appreciate your position in support of women and children, born and unborn.
  • We need you to defeat or amend this bill, on behalf of your constituents, and women and children across our great state.
  • This bill is discriminatory as written, considering it targets ONLY non-abortion related pregnancy resource centers.
  • The bill’s impacts are potentially harmful to pregnant women, considering it is likely to deprive, rather than increase, necessary resources for pregnant women.
  • Pregnant New York women face DIVERSE and BROAD unmet health and resource needs!
  • Pregnant women deserve more resources, not less!
  • Women deserve better® than abortion. And they deserve resources and support.

FFL is a nonsectarian and nonpartisan 501(c)(3) organization. If you need help now, contact your local PRC and go to our helpsite, www.WomenDeserveBetter.com.