Position Papers

  • Emergency Contraception
  • The Death Penalty (2005 Advocacy Day)
  • Embryonic Stem Cell Research and Human Cloning (2005 Advocacy Day)
  • Statement in support of Raising the Minimum Wage (2004 Advocacy Day)
  • Recent Cases Supporting Unborn Victims of Violence Act, updated 2004 (2004 Advocacy Day, see below for UV Position Paper)
  • Family Court Act Ammendment (2003 Advocacy Day)
  • Unborn Victims of Violence Act (2003 Advocacy Day)
  • Prenatal Care Assistance (2002 Advocacy Day)
  • Unborn Victims of Violence Act (2002 Advocacy Day)

Statement in opposition to: Access to Emergency Contraception for Self-administration by the Patient

  • Proposed legislation provides no age restrictions. Young teens would have easy access to a medication that currently requires a prescription, even for lesser dosages.
  • As a pro-woman, pro-life group, we are concerned about the potential health risks to women, girls, and the human embryos they may be carrying when taking this medicine, and urge legislators to maintain a patient-specific prescription.
  • Making this medication available to women on a single-dosage basis by a nurse or pharmacist does not provide the medical support required by law for all women taking regular birth control pills.
  • It is inconsistent and potentially hazardous to women to make this medication, essentially multiple high doses of birth control pills, available without a prescription, especially in light of FDA warning labels for estrogen and estrogen-progestin formulations, the same hormones found in so-called “emergency contraception.”
  • Packaging inserts and warning labels are seldom read, especially by minors.
  • Medical experts, including those at the FDA, agree that emergency contraception can either prevent a pregnancy or sometimes terminate a pregnancy, altering the lining of the uterus so an already-fertilized egg will be unable to implant. Marketing this drug as “contraception” constitutes false advertising and denies women fully-informed consent.
  • The current patient-specific prescription legislation provides a degree of protection for women and girls who are victims of rape or incest.
  • One time use of this medication commonly has the following side effects: nausea, vomiting, bleeding, and headaches. Planned Parenthood’s website lists two pages of cautions about emergency contraception.
  • A recent study co-authored by a doctor from Planned Parenthood, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, refutes the claim that changing to non-prescription status will reduce abortion numbers or pregnancy rates.

Feminists for Life of New York strongly opposes S6686 (Spano), legislation that would authorize pharmacists and nurses to dispense emergency contraceptive drugs without a physician’s patient-specific prescription.

Feminists for Life of New York strongly opposes capital punishment in New York State

We urge you to defeat any legislation proposed during the 2005-07 session that would “reform” current unconstitutional legislation for capital punishment.

We strongly challenge you to abandon any thought of reshaping future death penalty legislation. In short, remove capital punishment from our state laws.

As pro-life and pro-woman advocates, it only makes sense that we join the growing thousands of New Yorkers who object to the state policy of “killing in our name.”

Furthermore, we urge you to replace the sentence of capital punishment when applied for first degree murder with the sentence of life in prison without parole.

  • Nearly every developed country in the world has abolished the death penalty.
  • The death penalty in New York State has wasted money and effort during its past nearly 10 years.
  • During its years of legality, decisions about its use were assigned to district attorneys in each county. Subjectivity reigned in every case, depending on the opinions of the local D.A. Results were uneven application of the law. For example, more cases originated in upstate than downstate counties.
  • Capital punishment is extremely expensive even when it is not being actively sought. Juries take months to form. Appeals are inevitable delays even once a person is on death row.
  • There is always room for error, as we have seen in 2 Rochester cases and many others throughout the state and nation . Wrongful convictions have been epidemic across the United States.
  • The death penalty does not deter murder. The rates in upstate cities continue to grow.

Our state holds two tracks of justice, one for the advantaged and one for the disadvantaged. We cannot in good conscience rely on the death penalty when all do not receive the same justice.

Feminists For Life of New York Position Statement: Embryonic Stem Cell Research and Human Cloning

FFLNY objects to Embryonic Stem Cell Research and Human Cloning for any reason based the unanswered questions that have arisen during the organization’s research into the topic. These questions fall into four general categories: scientific, financial, ethical and women’s health considerations.

SCIENTIFIC QUESTIONS

According to, “Do No Harm, The coalition of Americans for Research Ethics”, an organization founded by researchers and physicians, there are currently 56 proven therapies or cures using adult stem cells and 0 therapies or cures using embryonic stem cells.

  • Is it scientifically responsible to pursue a course of research that has yielded few sought after therapeutic results while de-prioritizing a course of research that has yielded sought after results?
  • Have other, less evasive methods of procuring desired results for degenerative disease been sufficiently explored?
  • Are the purely scientific curiosities of embryonic cell researchers outweighing the diagnostic/therapeutic uses of the research?

FINANCIAL QUESTIONS

  • Is the potential for financial gain to researchers, pharmaceutical companies and other involved business superceding the ethical and health considerations posed by embryonic stem cell research?
  • Is the cost of embryonic stem cell research in proportion with the current results yielded?

ETHICAL QUESTIONS

Embryonic stem cell research and human cloning do not conform to the guidelines for human experimentation set by “The Nuremberg Code of 1947” or by the Declaration of Helsinki. Both documents, cornerstones to modern codes of ethics, deem research that disrupts or destroys the human subject unethical, regardless of its intended benefits to science or society.

  • Are embryonic stem cell researchers denying that the embryo is, “a developing human from fertilization onwards” as acknowledged by the National Academy of Sciences in 2002?
  • Are embryonic stem cell researchers denying basic human rights to developing embryos for the sake of scientific advancement?
  • From where will the live embryos necessary for this research come, and to what lengths will the scientific and business communities go to procure them?

WOMEN’S HEALTH QUESTIONS

  • What are the long-term medical effects of super ovulation chemicals on the health of women?
  • What population of women will the scientific community call upon if seeking volunteers to participate in creating and harvesting live embryos?
  • Will certain populations of women be offered compensation to become pregnant for the intent purpose of “embryo extraction” and if so, what are the medical, physical and psychological effects on these women?

In closing, FFLNY look to researchers and our elected officials for answers to these questions. FFLNY empathizes with people affected by degenerative disorders and diseases whom look with hope to embryonic stem-cell research for therapy and cures. We support the research of adult stem cells including those found in bone marrow, fat or adipose tissue and umbilical cord blood because this is where we see the most progress and the most hope for those inflicted.

FFLNY would like to see America chose the path of hope, rather than the path of death, by joining countries such as France, Germany, Austria, Ireland and others who have already banned the creation of embryos for stem cell research.

Statement in support of Raising the Minimum Wage

A.9710 , introduced by Susan John (passed by Assembly March 1, 2004)
S.3291C , introduced by Guy Velella (currently sitting in the Labor Committee)

Summary: This bill would enact the Empire State Wage Act of 2004, already passed by the Assembly. It would raise the $5.15 minimum wage in NYS to $7.10 in three increments. It would additionally provide for biennial reports and the establishment of a special task force on indexing over three years.

Points to consider:

  • It has been more than 30 years since NYS last raised its minimum wage above the federal level, which today is $5.15 an hour. Today the state minimum wage would be $8.83 an hour if it had kept pace with inflation. That still would be less than the wage in 1979. This bill raises it only to $7.10 in three increments.
  • Several neighbors of NYS have raised their minimum wageabove the inadequate federal level, including Vermont ($6.75), Massachusetts ($6.75), and Connecticut ($7.10). Nine other states and the District of Columbia have passed similar legislation.
  • Since more than one million New Yorkers would benefit from an increase in the minimum wage and 60.6% of minimum wage earners are women, more than 600,000 women would benefit. (Fiscal Policy Institute)
  • Minimum wages disproportionately affect single mothers, a special constituency of Feminists for Life. Single moms are 10% of the minimum wage workforce, but only 5.7% of the overall workforce. A single mother earning $6.15 per hour ($1 an hour more than the current minimum) still would not rise above the poverty line for a family of three ($13,000/year), even with the benefits of the earned-income tax credit and food stamps.
  • A higher minimum wage would help insure that work represents a path toward self-sufficiency. It is also part of a broader strategy to fight poverty. Both of these fight the domestic violence to which so many dependent women are subject.
  • Minimum wages also disproportionately affect minorities, so minority women are at double risk. 18% of minimum wage earners are African-American (11.7% of the total workforce) and 14.5% are Hispanic (11.3% of the total workforce).
  • There is no evidence of job loss because of an increase in minimum wage. (1999 Economic Report to the President, the Council of Economic Advisors)
  • Women aged 16-25 with a high school education or less, thought to be the most vulnerable in the labor market, are helped (i.e. do not lose jobs) by the rise of the minimum wage. (1996-7 Economic Policy Institute)
  • Women are more likely than men to work in food service. These jobs will not be lost through a raise in minimum wages because more and more they are dominated by large, national chain stores, who can afford to pay minimum wages more than the mom-and-pop stores that once dominated this field.

FEMINISTS FOR LIFE OF NEW YORK , the statewide chapter of Feminists for Life of America, and a member of the “$5.15 Is Not Enough” Coalition, strongly supports the passage of this legislation in New York. Currently, women in this state frequently make child-rearing decisions based on their income. Low levels of pay occasionally force them to decide they are unable to assume responsibilities for parenting. They might even encourage abortion. We view this bill as a long-overdue step towards correction of the inconsistency and inadequacy of New York State’s promotion of rights for women.

Current Senate Co-sponsors : Balboni, DeFrancisco, Flanagan, Fuschillo, Hannon, Leibell, Marcellino, Mendez, Morahan, Padavan, Robach, and Spano.

Recent Cases Supporting Unborn Victims of Violence Act, updated 2004 (2004 Advocacy Day, see below for UV Position Paper)

12/23/03 Brooklyn —23 year old Stephanie Jenkins, 3 months pregnant,shot to death by the child’s father Allan Murphy, supposedly during a game of Russian roulette, when he yanked a revolver from her hand, put the gun to her head and pulled the trigger.

9/13/03 Rockland County (Spring Valley) — 43 year old Maria Caguama, 2 months pregnant, stabbed to death in her home by her boyfriend, Wilson Campoverde, also the father of her child. Charges unknown.

7/1/03 Troy — 18 yr. old Cashawnda Rowlett, 9 weeks pregnant, escaped death at the hands of Sean Brown, her boyfriend, of Albany, who attempted to kill her and cause her to miscarry by repeated stabbing. Both mother and child survived. Charged with attempted murder, first and second degree assault, illegal abortion, illegal possession of a weapon.

6/29/03 Bronx — 24-yr.-old Julie Harris, 9 months pregnant with twins, was kicked and punched in the abdomen by a 54-yr-old man. The subsequentlabor produced stillborn twins. The loss of these 2 lives, which days or perhaps hours later would have been recognized, went unpunished.

3/12/2003 Buffalo — 38 year old Gloria Busch, 4 months pregnant, sufferedburns over 70% of her body in a murder attempt by boyfriend and father of the child, David Elersic (married to another woman). After she refused to have an abortion, he bound her hands and feet with duct tape, filled the room with gas from the stove, then threw in a lit cigarette. Miraculously, the baby Zachary was born unharmed 5 months later. Elersic received a 15-yr. sentence for attempted murder—only 1 count.

3/4/2003 Buffalo — 21 year old Crystal Miller, 5 months pregnant, was shot by Willie Jackson, Jr., who was jealous of the unborn child according to prosecutors. Jackson allegedly stalked Crystal after their breakup, then went on a shooting rampage, killing Crystal’s 3 year old daughter and her grandmother. Crystal was in critical condition; both she and her unborn baby were expected to live. Charged with two counts of first degree murder for slayings of the child and grandmother, one count of attempted murder for the shooting of Crystal.

7/14/2002 Orleans County — 29-y. old Zaneta Browne, 4 months pregnant with twins, was shot & killed by the twins’ father and his wife, Jerold & Keya Ponder, when she refused to have an abortion. In separate trials, the Ponders were each found guilty of 2 nd-degree manslaughter for Ms. Browne’s death, but no penalty was incurred for the murder of her twins. (Body buried in Monroe Co., evidence destroyed in Livingston Co.)

6/27/2002 New York City — 26 year old unidentified woman, 8 months pregnant, pushed and kicked by Mario Bauza so hard that she delivered a stillborn baby. Chged with one count of first degree assault.

1/27/2002 Buffalo — 20-yr.-old Jeremy Powell forced entry into his 20-yr.-old pregnant ex-girlfriend’s apt., then beat, punched, & kicked herbecause she refused to have an abortion. “I’m going to beat that baby out of you,” he said. She made her way to a hospital where she miscarried. Powell, accused of criminal abortion, burglary, assault, and unlawful-endangerment, is jailed pending grand jury hearing.

12/8/2001 Suffolk County (Nesconset) — 32 year old Claire McGowan, 4 months pregnant, was killed when she and her husband were driving in their car and hit by a pick-up truck that slammed head-on into them. No criminal charges. Four summonses issued to the driver of the truck for driving with a suspended permit in an unregistered, uninsured vehicle with false plates.

9/20/2001 Franklin County (Malone) — An unidentified woman, age unknown, pregnant in her first trimester, was kicked by her boyfriendClayton Tucker until she aborted. Prosecutors say Tucker knew his girlfriend was in her first trimester and repeatedly kicked her in an attempt to kill the baby. He was charged with illegal abortion.

9/2/2001 Bronx — 18 year old Kalish Bosier, almost 9 months pregnant, was shot in the head and killed by Warren Teasley on a park bench in Cedar Park. Efforts by emergency technicians to save her baby were unsuccessful. One count of murder and criminal possession of a weapon.

8/4/2001 Brooklyn — Off-duty NYPD cop, DWI, killed 24-yr.-old woman who was 8 1/2 months pregnant, her unborn son, her 4 yr.-old son, and 16 yr.-old sister.

6/10/2001 Washington Heights, NY — An unidentified woman in her mid-20’s, 5 months pregnant, was shot once in the head by robbers who pushed their way into her apartment. Unknown charges.

1/31/2001 Pavilion, outside Buffalo — 24 yr.-old former farm workertried to induce an abortion of a 19 yr.-old pregnant (native of Perry) woman’s child by lacing her soda with a veterinary drug used for that purpose in animals. Charged with assault and illegal abortion.

1/17/2000 Suffolk County (Coram) — 20 year old Kathy Thompson, 8 months pregnant, was killed when Joseph Tusa, intoxicated, crashed the car he and Thompson were in. Charged with dwi and traffic citations for driving with a suspended license and operating an unregistered, un-inspected and uninsured vehicle.

8/26/2000 Geneva — 19 year old Beth Chadwick, 6 months pregnant, was attacked by her mother’s ex-boyfriend, 41 yr.-old Michael Jacobs, who broke an order of protection & visited his ex-girlfriend’s home. After arguing with Beth, he stomped on her head, rendering her comatose. She will likely have permanent brain damage. Her baby was delivered by C-section, 3 months premature. Jacobs was found guilty of first and second degree assault, criminal contempt, and endangering the welfare of a child.

4/14/2000 Bronx — 31 year old Joy Schepis, 2 months pregnant, wasforcibly and repeatedly injected an abortion –inducing drug by her boyfriend, Dr. Stephen Pack. Found guilty os assault and illegal abortion.

1995 Westchester — pregnant woman bludgeoned to death 8 days before her due date

10/1994 Capital District — 21-yr.-old Mary Anne Powell strangled by her husband when 6 months pregnant; body was found 19 months later in duffel bag in the Hudson R.

1993 Troy — pregnant 15-yr.old Antoinette Strope killed and dismembered w/ hacksaw by her 25-yr.-old boyfriend because she had threatened to expose him as the father of the child. He wanted to avoid statutory rape charges.

Statement in Support of the Family Court Act Amendment (S.2413)

The Family Court Act (S. 2413), recently introduced by Senator Spano, would amend the Family Court Act and Criminal Procedure Law to expand the definition of “members of the same family or household.” For purposes only of jurisdiction in domestic violence cases, family and household members would be expanded to include “former spouse whether or not living together” as well as “unrelated persons who continually or at regular intervals reside in the same household or have done so in the past.” Currently the law fails to recognize the full spectrum of domestic violence victims, thereby denying equal protection under the law. This bill would expand access to the courts for orders of protection. It would not redefine the family in general.

Why does Feminists for Life of New York support these changes?

Many victims of domestic violence are not married to, nor do they have a child in common with, their abuser. These situations include households where the children of the victim are not those of the abuser, yet they are exposed to and affected by their violent behavior. The inability of the victim to seek a Family Court order of protection denies these children the safety and rights that are ordinarily available to other children subjected to the same circumstances.

A victim not married to their abuser, but residing with them, or having done so in the past, is currently denied the protection of the expanded statewide police arrest policies. The denial of the summary arrest of the person charged with the crime reduces the possibility of prosecution and exposes the victim to further abuse. Under the current definition of household member, these victims are denied access to Family Court and the orders of protection available through the court. Also, under the limited definition, their criminal court orders of protection are not listed in the statewide registry.

Wouldn’t these changes burden the Family Courts?

Records from the State of New York Unified Court System do not substantiate this burden. Currently, family offenses are minimum contributors to Family Court’s caseload. (Unified Court System, Budget April 1, 2002-March 31, 2003, shows only 8% of filings are based on family offenses).

Why do pro-life feminists favor this redefinition of household?

Whenever we can improve the condition of children and their mothers, most often the victims of domestic violence, Feminists for Life of New York speaks out. Whether these children are born or unborn, whether their parents are currently married or not, they deserve equal protection under the New York State justice system. A further reason is the frequent victimization of girls who become pregnant through the abuse of their parents’ boyfriends, who are not seen as subject to Family Court orders of protection because they are not considered household members even though they have a continued presence in the house. These and other children are caught in a legal definition of household and family that is not in their best interest. We implore you to help provide a means for their equal justice in Family Court. Correct the inconsistency and inadequacy in New York’s promotion of rights for women.

Today, S2413 sits in the Senate Judiciary Committee. We implore you to co-sponsor it and urge your colleagues to vote it out of committee for a vote by the Senate.

For your convenience, the Senate Judiciary Committee members are: Marchi, Volker, Farley, Velella, Saland, LaValle, Meier, Balboni, Maltese, Bonacic, Skelos, Hannon, M. Smith, Breslin, Sampson, Duane, Schneiderman, Andrews, Connor, and Dilan. If you do not have a visit planned, be sure to drop off a letter if you are in their district.

Statement in Support of the Unborn Victims of Violence Act

A.693, introduced by Peter Rivera (currently referred to Health Committee)
S.403, introduced by Serphin Maltese (currently referred to Codes Committee)

Summary: This bill would establish that if an unborn child is injured or killed during the commission of an already-defined state crime of violence against a pregnant woman, then the assailant may be charged with a second offense on behalf of the second victim, the unborn child.

  • Figures clearly show pregnant women, especially teens, are at increased risk of abuse. They suffer twice the risk of battery as those who are not pregnant. 40% of assaults on women by male partners begin during the first pregnancy. Battered women account for 23% of pregnant women seeking prenatal care. Yet as violence, often aimed at their unborn children, escalates against these women, they have no recourse to a legal deterrent. As a result, pregnant women are an “endangered species” because of their pregnancy and the unborn are endangered because they are in women’s bodies.
  • 26 other states recognize fetuses as victims of assault and homicide. In every one of them where these laws have been challenged (specifically: CA, GA, IL, MN, MO, OH, WI) they have withstood constitutional scrutiny.
  • An April 2001 Gallup/CNN/USA Today poll found that 93% of Americans believe a criminal should face additional charges for harming or killing an unborn child during a violent crime against the pregnant mother.
  • All states, including NY, allow recovery of damages for prenatal injuries to a child who is subsequently born alive.
  • Enormous amounts of time, money, and effort are expended to shield unborn children from effects of alcohol, AIDS, second-hand smoke, computer radiation, auto accidents (e.g. airbag positioning), and execution of the mother by the death penalty (2000, U.S. Innocent Child Protection Act). Yet purposeful, brutal attacks against unborn children go unpunished.
  • In New York State a woman has a legal right to choose to terminate a pregnancy, but no legal protection to bring her chosen pregnancy safely to term. This is clearly discrimination against pregnant women!
  • NOT an abortion issue. This bill specifically excludes the act of legal abortion. Crimes addressed by this bill deal with a decision NOT made by the mother, but by some outside third party, AGAINST the mother’s will.

FEMINISTS FOR LIFE OF NEW YORK , the statewide chapter of Feminists for Life of America, strongly supports the passage of this legislation in New York. Currently, women in this state are stripped of their ability to seek justice on behalf of their unborn children. We view this bill as a long-overdue step towards correction of the inconsistency and inadequacy of New York State’s promotion of rights for women.

If you are not a co-sponsor, please join those colleagues listed below who are.

Current Assembly co-sponsors: Rivera, Ortiz, Acampora, Alfano, Barra, Barraga, Burling, Butler, Casale, Cook, Errigo, Ferrara, Gordon, Hayes, Kirwan, Kolb, Labriola, Nesbitt, Oaks, Ortloff, Prentiss, Rivera, Seddio, Sweeney, Tedisco, and Warner

Current Senate co-sponsors: Maltese, DeFrancisco, Farley, Golden, Johnson, Larkin, Libous, Marchi, Maziarz, Meier, Morahan, Onorato, Padavan, Rath, Robach, Smith, M., Trunzo, Velella, Volker, and Wright.

Memorandum in Support of A.8953 – Eligibility for prenatal care assistance program

Bill A.8953 (Gottfried) would remove conditions of eligibility for prenatal care assistance with regards to immigration status to the extent such programs receive federal funding.

Appropriate and consistent medical care and attention is necessary for pregnant women and their developing children. Children born in the United States are citizens of the U.S., although their mothers may be ineligible for Medicaid coverage because of their own immigration status. Healthy birth outcomes are always higher when mothers receive care.

When prenatal care is absent there is a higher risk of both infant and maternal death. Gestational diabetes and toxemia can lead to both infant and maternal death. Mothers avoid seeking care because of the high out of pocket costs without Medicaid insurance. Should the child survive the mother in these cases the child is often reliant on State support through the foster care and social service programs.

Serious injury and disease to the mother and child can often times be prevented with proper maternal health and nutrition. Simple prematurity, or even full term deliveries in which the child is underweight and undernourished cause 60% of neonatal deaths. Premature infants can often be hospitalized for long periods battling convulsions, infections, rickets and hemorrhage at costs running into the tens of thousands of dollars. Should these children survive infancy they may continue to fight bone and joint disease, epilepsy, retardation and respiratory infections lifelong.

Anencephaly, Cerebral Palsy and Spina Bifida are shown to be preventable with proper maternal nutrition. Simple care can lead to greatly improved quality of life for children and families of New York. Costs to the State for caring for individuals with these diseases include inpatient and outpatient care, long-term care, special education services, and the indirect costs of productivity losses and the psychosocial distress. One study shows the direct costs of care at $503,000 dollars per individual. Prenatal care and births costs approximately $1200 in New York.

For the health and wellness of the residents and future citizens of New York the state should allow full access to prenatal health care, regardless of the mother’s current immigration status. Clearly such coverage would also be cost effective. Federal law allows states to provide for such coverage and eight states have already enacted such legislation. Passage of this bill should be an immediate priority for New York.

Feminists for Life of New York supports the passage of this legislation as it will provide all New York residents with equitable maternal health care and all future citizens the opportunity to healthy lives.

Statement in Support of the Unborn Victims of Violence Act

A.9908, introduced by Peter Rivera
S.57-B, introduced by Serphin Maltese

Summary: This bill would establish that if an unborn child is injured or killed during the commission of an already-defined state crime of violence against a pregnant woman, then the assailant may be charged with a second offense on behalf of the second victim, the unborn child.

  • NOT an abortion issue. This bill specifically excludes the act of legal abortion.
  • Crimes addressed by this bill deal with a decision NOT made by the mother, but by some outside third party, AGAINST the mother’s will.
  • In New York State a woman has a legal right to choose to terminate a pregnancy, but no legal protection to bring her chosen pregnancy safely to term.
  • 26 other states recognize fetuses as victims of assault and homicide. In every one of them where these laws have been challenged (specifically: CA, GA, IL, MN, MO, OH, WI) they have withstood constitutional scrutiny.
  • An April 2001 Gallup/CNN/USA Today poll found that 93% of Americans believe a criminal should face additional charges for harming or killing an unborn child during a violent crime against the pregnant mother.
  • All states, including NY, allow recovery of damages for prenatal injuries to a child who is subsequently born alive.
  • Enormous amounts of time, money, and effort are expended to shield unborn children from effects of alcohol, AIDS, second-hand smoke, computer radiation, auto accidents (e.g. airbag positioning), and execution of the mother by the death penalty (2000, U.S .Innocent Child Protection Act). Yet purposeful, brutal attacks against unborn children go unpunished.
  • Figures clearly show pregnant women, especially teens, are at increased risk of abuse. (They suffer twice the risk of battery as those who are not pregnant. 40% of assaults on women by male partners begin during the first pregnancy. Battered women account for 23% of pregnant women seeking prenatal care.) Yet as violence, often aimed at their unborn children, escalates against these women, they have no recourse to a legal deterrent.

FEMINISTS FOR LIFE OF NEW YORK, the statewide chapter of Feminists for Life of America, strongly supports the passage of this legislation in New York. Currently, women in this state are stripped of their ability to seek justice on behalf of their unborn children. We view this bill as a long-overdue step towards correction of the inconsistency and inadequacy of New York State’s promotion of rights for women.