Issues: Human Rights

NARAL Lobby Day

(Albany - May 5th) Democratic Conference Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins addressed an impassioned crowd at the NARAL Lobby Day in Albany. In her speech, the Leader mentioned the fact that the Senate has been going to sleep when it relates to legislation regarding women, women’s rights and women’s reproductive rights. She stressed how imperative it is for members of the legislature to be bipartisan about these issues to protect women across New York State. She closed by urging the crowd to go back to their districts after the lobby day is over, and energize the base of support to foster a more progressive state.

May 5, 2015
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Family Planning Advocates Day of Action

(Albany - May 4th) "You think you are lobbying for bills, and you are, but it’s bigger than that," said Democratic Conference Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins at the Family Planning Advocates (FPA) rally Monday morning. As a long-time proponent of women's reproductive health rights, the Leader came out to support the efforts of FPA and its members who continue to fight to protect and expand access to a full range of reproductive health services. "You are lobbying a legislature that refuses to allow women self-determination, refuses to allow women equality, refuses to allow women to say, I know what I need.

May 5, 2015
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Martin Luther King, Jr.Memorial Re-dedication Ceremony

(Albany - April 29th) An unveiling of a new glass sculpture titled “Seeds of Enlightenment” took place on Wednesday morning at the Empire State Plaza as part of the Martin Luther King, Jr.Memorial Re-dedication Ceremony. The original sculpture designed by artist Eric Hilton was dedicated in 2000 but badly damaged in July 2014. Corning Inc. and The Corning Museum of Glass decided to replace the memorial sculpture with a new one that bears the same title as the original. The Senator took part in the unveiling and said in a press release about the event, “I’m honored to join the Office of General Services, Corning Inc., and The Corning Museum of Glass for the re-dedication of this beautiful memorial honoring the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

April 30, 2015
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Torture or safety mechanism? Lawmakers looking closely at the use of solitary confinement in state prisons

By DANYAL MOHAMMADZADEH, Legislative Gazette Staff Writer |04.27.2015

 

Senator Perkins was a proud co-host of a recent public education event concerning the HALT Solitary Confinement Act, A.4401 | S.2659.  The Senator’s message was clear: 

 

“We have a human rights crisis here in New York State; over 4,000 individuals—many of the most vulnerable and defenseless among us—are subject to state-sanctioned torture, in the form of solitary confinement.

 

In 2011, the United Nations Special Rapporteur agreed with this assessment, calling solitary confinement “torture”—plain and simple.

 

April 30, 2015
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Gianaris renews call to end ‘conversion therapy’

In the wake of President Barack Obama’s recent comments condemning “conversion therapy,” State Sen. Mike Gianaris has renewed his call to ban the practice in New York.

Check out this Sunnyside Post report for more details.

 

April 30, 2015
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Gianaris Introduces Bill to Ban State-Funded Travel to Indiana in Response to Discriminatory Law

Senator Michael Gianaris introduced a bill that would ban state-funded or state-sponsored travel to Indiana or other states that may emulate Indiana’s new discriminatory “religious freedom” law.

“In recent years our nation has finally moved forward on LGBT rights and it is important that we as New Yorkers take a stand to keep us from moving backwards,” said Senator Gianaris. “In order for our state to play our rightful role as a national leader on this issue, we need to send a loud and clear message all the way to Indiana that this discriminatory law must be opposed. I urge my colleagues to support this proposal, and I encourage states that have not already done so to follow our example.”

April 30, 2015
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Statement From Senator Ortt on Women’s Equality Agenda

It was an honor that one of my very first votes as a State Senator was in support of a long-overdue Women's Equality Agenda. I'm encouraged that the Assembly followed our lead and today voted for equal pay for equal work.  I urge the Governor to pass this into law and I hope the Assembly leadership will immediately bring all the remaining women's equality bills to the floor so that we can: prohibit sexual harassment in the workplace, remedy discrimination, prohibit family status discrimination, prevent housing discrimination for the victims of domestic violence, allow for electronic filing for orders of protection and end pregnancy discrimination.

April 27, 2015
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Statement from Senator Catharine Young on the Assembly's Passage of Equal Pay Legislation

“The Senate began 2015 by immediately passing legislation to guarantee equal pay in the workplace, provide victims of domestic violence greater protections and address the other important components that make up our Women’s Equality Agenda. While a number of these items still need to be passed by the Assembly, it is a positive sign that they finally have acted on the issue of equal pay for equal work.

 

April 27, 2015
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Senate to Celebrate Earth Week With a Package of Bills to Protect the Environment, Increase Green Jobs, and Boost Recreation

The New York State Senate will be celebrating Earth Week by acting upon an extensive package of 27 bills that would create new protections for natural resources, promote energy conservation, help create green jobs, and increase tourism through enhanced recreational opportunities. Senate Majority Leader Dean G.

April 20, 2015
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Statement from Sen. Krueger on 20-year Sentence for Purvi Patel

New York -- The following statement was issued today by State Senator Liz Krueger (D-Manhattan), Co-Chair of the NYS Bipartisan Legislative Pro-Choice Caucus, in response to reports that Purvi Patel was sentenced by an Indiana court to 20 years in prison on charges of feticide and felony neglect: 

April 2, 2015
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Join Senator Perkins For HALT Solitary Confinement Advocacy Day In Albany | April 22nd

Solitary Confinement:  Inconceivably, we have a human rights crisis here in New York State, as over 4,000 individuals—many of the most vulnerable and defenseless among us—are subject to state-sanctioned torture, in the form of solitary confinement.  This is an unacceptable situation and thus we continue the fight that Martin Sostre—a political prisoner and revolutionary born and raised in Harlem—commenced over forty five years ago when he first legally and successfully challenged the practice of solitary confinement as cruel and inhuman punishment.  In 2011, the United Nations Special Rapporteur agreed with this assessment, calling solitary confinement “torture”—plain and simple.

 

April 22, 12:00 AM - 12:00 AM
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Yonkers Riverfront Library Women's History Month Event "She Did and So Can You!"

(Yonkers - March 14th) March is Women's History Month. A great way to spend it? Inspriring the next generation to be leaders! On March 14th the Senator, along with Assemblymember Shelley Mayer, spoke at the Yonkers Riverfront Library Women's History Month Event "She Did and So Can You! " The Girl Scouts and others joined the celebration of women leaders.

March 30, 2015
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THE PEOPLE’S BUDGET BUDGET EQUITY XXIII

PRELIMINARY ANALYSIS OF THE GOVERNOR’S EXECUTIVE BUDGET 2015-2016 BY THE NEW YORK STATE BLACK, PUERTO RICAN, HISPANIC, AND ASIAN LEGISLATIVE CAUCUS

File: 
BPRHA Budget Equity 2015.pdf

March 20, 2015
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Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins Remarks on the "Bloody Sunday" Resolution

(Albany - March 17th) Senate Democratic Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins introduced a State Senate Resolution commemorating the 50th anniversary of “Bloody Sunday,”  when, on March 7th, 1965, civil rights protesters marched from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama in the fight for voting rights. That fateful day, over 600 men, women and children were beaten as they attempted to march across the Edmund Pettus Bridge. Senator Stewart-Cousins spoke about the courage of the marchers and their firm belief that justice and equality would prevail. The brutality these unsung heroes faced sparked awareness that allowed for the right things to happen to minorities across the nation.

March 18, 2015
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Assembly Passage of Anti-Human Trafficking Legislation a Positive Step For Women Across New York

Statement from Senator Catharine Young (R,C,I – Olean) on the passage of the Trafficking Victims Protection and Justice Act:

 

“Today’s passage of the anti-human trafficking legislation by the Assembly is a positive step for the health and safety of all New York’s women. For nearly two years my Senate Republican colleagues and I have been calling on the Assembly’s downstate leadership to follow our lead and put progress ahead of politics. By finally doing what’s right for New York’s women, the new Assembly Speaker has shown a willingness to work together to get results on the critical issues before our state.

 

March 16, 2015
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Senator Tom Croci Applauds Assembly Passage of Human Trafficking Legislation

“I’m glad to see the Assembly finally passed the human-trafficking bill that my Senate colleagues and I acted on the very first working day of Session.  The Assembly should keep following our lead and pass the other important bills in the Women’s Equality Agenda we approved in the Senate to guarantee equal pay for equal work, protect against sexual harassment in the workplace, and provide effective domestic violence prevention.

I’d also like to thank the many constituents who signed my on-line petition in support of the Senate’s Women’s Equality Agenda.  Together we have demonstrated the power to break government gridlock by standing united against narrow minded, single issue extremists.”

March 16, 2015
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Action to Combat Human Trafficking -- A Big Step Forward for Women’s Equality

My colleagues and I in the New York State Senate kicked off the 2015 Session by approving our Women's Equality Agenda -- a vitally important series of bills designed to ensure greater equality and opportunities for women throughout our state.

March 16, 2015
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CAUCUS PUSHES 2015 LEGISLATIVE SESSION PRIORITIES

“Meeting the Needs of Minority Communities during this Budget Season 

New York, NY – The New York State Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic and Asian Legislative Caucus led by Chair Assemblyman Jeffrion Aubry, outlined the major priorities from their annual report “The People’s Priorities 2015”. Standing in support with them was New York State United Teachers (NYSUT), Fiscal Policy Institute (FPI), Hunger Action, American Heart Association, YMCA, and other labor unions, advocacy groups, and clergy. The Caucus formally announced their agenda which ensures that the budget and other pieces of legislation positively affect and provide equal access for low income and minority communities. 

March 12, 2015
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Senator Hamilton marches in commemoration of 1965 Civil Rights protesters in Selma

(Brooklyn - March 7, 2015) In honor of the bravery of Civil Rights protesters 50 years ago today, Senator Hamilton marched across the Brooklyn Bridge with Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, elected official colleagues, and human rights advocates.

The New York Daily  News reported, "Hundreds of people — black and white — walked across the Brooklyn Bridge... Their arms linked, former Mayor David Dinkins and other political and civil rights leaders led the singing, sign-holding procession of marchers."

March 9, 2015
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