Photo Courtesy of the Office of the Governor
Cuomo announced the actions on Monday, hours before President Trump nominated Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.
By Forum Staff
Governor Andrew Cuomo on Monday announced new actions to protect reproductive rights in the Empire State as President Donald Trump nominated conservative jurist Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.
Through regulations by the Department of Financial Services and Department of Health, the State will ensure an insurer must cover over-the-counter emergency contraception in addition to all other contraceptive drugs, devices or other products for women approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and, as well as the dispensing of 12 months of contraceptive at one time, all without co-insurance, co-pays or deductibles.
The governor said a conservative-heavy SCOTUS could mean a roll back of advancements in reproductive health care.
“In the face of this federal assault, New York is going to protect itself because this state has always been the progressive capital of the nation,” Cuomo said. “This is the time to fight back. This is the time to resist. This is the time to make your voice heard. This is the time where every New Yorker has to say, you’re not taking women’s right to reproductive rights away. We’re going to protect ourselves because this is the state that has always stood up for what’s right.”
Cuomo on Monday also called on the State Senate to reconvene and vote on codifying the protections of Roe. v. Wade into State law. The governor noted that the Assembly has passed legislation to codify the protections of Roe v. Wade for the last six years, including during the 2018 legislative session.
“The federal government’s attempt to set back women’s rights and erode the progress made will not be tolerated,” U.S. Rep. Nydia Velazquez (D-Queens, Brooklyn, Manhattan) added. “We will take all steps necessary to protect reproductive rights in this great state.”
Cuomo has indicated that he’s calling for the passage of State legislation codifying the protections of Roe. v. Wade to ensure the right of women to make personal health care decisions to protect their health in addition to their life and ensure that health care professionals can provide these services without fear of criminal penalty.
“I lost my seat in Congress over my steadfast support of the Affordable Care Act and the contraception mandate, and I know how critically important it is to protect these rights at the state level,” said Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul. “That is why I stand with the governor and the women of this great state in fighting back to ensure protections and safety for women when it comes to their reproductive health. Given all that is happening in Washington, these actions will protect women’s reproductive rights. As president of the State Senate, I’m also calling on Senate Republican leadership to protect the women of this state and pass the Reproductive Health Act and codify Roe v. Wade. No one should tell us what to do with our bodies. Not now, not ever.”
In other reproductive health care news this week, New York State’s Planned Parenthood Empire State Votes Political Action Committee endorsed the Cuomo-Hochul ticket in this year’s gubernatorial election.