We now know for sure from a leaked email that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh in fact does not believe Roe v. Wade is settled law. If that’s not bad enough, he referred to birth control as “abortion-inducing drugs.” Now more than ever, with Kavanaugh’s confirmation looming, we need elected officials in Albany who understand that sexual and reproductive freedom is a right, not a privilege. We need political leadership that will fight to make New York the progressive beacon it should be.
In the critical September 13th primary, we must support candidates who we trust will fight for New Yorkers’ access to abortion and birth control, who believe in the importance of comprehensive sexuality education, and who understand the complex intersections of sexual and reproductive rights, economic justice, and racial equity.
For us at PPNYC Votes PAC, that means supporting Jessica Ramos for Senate District 13, Zellnor Myrie for Senate District 20, Robert Jackson for Senate District 31, Alessandra Biaggi for Senate District 34, and Melissa Sklarz for Assembly District 30.
It’s no secret that the movement for sexual and reproductive rights faces grave threats today. The candidates we have endorsed have put sexual and reproductive health and justice at the forefront of their visions for an equitable New York.
Despite New York’s reputation as a liberal bastion, our right to sexual and reproductive freedom is on the line like never before. For nearly a decade, our state leadership has failed to pass the Reproductive Health Act (RHA) and the Comprehensive Contraceptive Coverage Act (CCCA), two bills that aim to ensure access to quality sexual and reproductive health care for New Yorkers. These bills were blocked despite widespread support from constituents, because the majority of the New York State Senate is anti-sexual and reproductive health and rights.
We deserve representation that reflects our values and seeks to empower all New Yorkers. Our elected officials should be acting to protect our sexual and reproductive freedom as we face mounting restrictions from Washington–but instead, they’re playing political games and failing to do their jobs as legislators.
For marginalized communities in New York, from low-income groups to communities of color, access to sexual and reproductive health care and its consequences on health outcomes is a growing and dire issue. Shamefully, in New York City, Black women are 12 times more likely to die from complications arising from pregnancy than their white counterparts. Even with affordability protections, so many New Yorkers find the cost of health care prohibitively expensive, and many immigrants remain unaware of their rights to health care access or are unable to find linguistically and culturally competent providers. New York City’s sexuality education program remains inconsistent and out of date compared with other major American cities.
We desperately need leaders who understand the importance of these issues to our communities’ health, wellness, and empowerment. PPNYC Votes PAC is proud to endorse and work with elected officials who seek to ensure sexual and reproductive freedom and access to important health services, regardless of New Yorkers’ genders, orientations, immigration statuses, or ability to pay. Together, we can build a New York that is at the forefront of progressive legislation that recognizes the rights of all people to make their own choices about their bodies, futures, and health.
Our full list of endorsements can be viewed here, and additional endorsements may be announced periodically.
Laura McQuade is the president and CEO of Planned Parenthood NYC Votes PAC.