Women's Equality Act

Kathy Hochul
Karen DeWitt

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Women’s Equality Act saw some successes in the legislature in 2015, after the most controversial of the measures, an abortion rights provision, was separated out from the rest of the items.

  Women’s rights bills were once again debated in the legislature, but ended in a political stalemate, with none of the provisions coming any closer to passage by both houses. 

WAMC/Allison Dunne

A coalition of women’s groups is relaunching the Women’s Equality Act, which failed in the legislature earlier this year, with a new strategy that they say could help them win passage in 2014.


New York State’s legislative session came to a close early this morning with the state Senate gaveling out shortly after 6:45 a.m. following a final all night session. The Assembly, which stayed in session from Thursday through to the early morning hours on Friday adjourned for the year at around 9 p.m. Friday evening.

Among those measures passed by both houses was Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Start-Up NY plan, formerly known as Tax Free NY, which would give large tax breaks to new businesses located near state college campuses.

Women’s groups are putting pressure on the State Senate’s ruling coalition to take up Governor Cuomo’s Women’s Equality Act, which includes  an abortion rights provision.

Senator DeFrancisco, a Syracuse Republican and Chair of the Finance Committee, said in an interview with public radio and television that most New York women aren’t that interested in the proposal, “and would not even lose a night’s sleep about expanding abortion rights”.

WAMC/Allison Dunne

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo was in Poughkeepsie Wednesday as part of his tour to push his Women’s Equality Act. Meanwhile, a Hudson Valley state Assemblyman is calling on Cuomo to have Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver removed from office following what could be a new development in the Vito Lopez sexual harassment case.

Cuomo spoke at Vassar College, urging the roomful of supporters to make the Women’s Equality Act a reality before the fast approaching end of this year’s legislative session.

As reported this weekend in the New York Times, Governor Andrew Cuomo is set to propose changes to the state’s policies on abortion as part of his ‘Women’s Equality Act’ introduced during his State of the State Address that include allow health care practitioners, not solely physicians, from performing the procedure.

Women's Equality Act Proposal Draws Much Attention

Jan 10, 2013

One of several proposals in New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s State-of-the-State Speech Wednesday includes a Women’s Equality Act, a ten-point agenda that includes protecting a woman’s freedom of choice by enacting the Reproductive Health Act. And Cuomo made it clear Thursday that he will give the same high-octane effort he gave the legalization of same-sex marriage in 2011 which remains the capstone of his progressive agenda. The Democrat says he's also deciding to disagree with Catholic Archbishop Timothy Dolan, who urged Cuomo not to expand abortion rights.