Issues: Human Rights

From the Floor and the Heart, Senators Make an Issue Personal

By Michael M. Grynbaum

ALBANY — Ruth Hassell-Thompson was a young girl decades ago when her older brother, a gay man, vanished from her deeply religious family, moving away to escape their disapproving father.

Ms. Hassell-Thompson, 67, searched for years, finally finding him in a village in the south of France. When she urged him to come home, he said that “my father doesn’t want to see me.”

December 4, 2009


“At the present time, society is equally divided on the issue of gay marriage,” said Senator Kenneth P. LaValle.

December 3, 2009

Watch the Senate debate marriage equality

Today, the Senate engages in an historic debate on S66003, a bill that would extend full marriage rights to all couples in New York. Login or Register to leave comment on the debate. Please note, all comments will be moderated in compliance with our Terms of Participation.


December 2, 2009

Serrano Statement on Marriage Equality Bill

November 10, 2009

(New York, NY)-- State Senator José M. Serrano (D-Manhattan/Bronx) expressed disappointment that a marriage equality bill was not brought to the Senate floor for a vote today. "When we look at past civil-rights movements, there were always those who were on the wrong side of history by believing that changes in archaic laws would create havoc within our society," said Serrano.

November 10, 2009

Senator Serrano Honored for Advocacy Against Domestic Violence

Today Senator Serrano was honored for his support of the Mount Sinai Sexual Assault and Violence Intervention Program (SAVI), and for his commitment to combating sexual assault and domestic violence in underserved areas.

“It is vital that survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault have advocates  and counselors available to support them through a process that is often very painful,” said Senator Serrano.

October 1, 2009

Statement by State Senator Daniel Squadron on Signing of Bill Eliminating “Oriental” From State Documents:

“I was proud to cosponsor this important legislation that will eliminate the use of the term “oriental” from state documents. I commend Senator Johnson and Assemblywoman Meng for bringing this bill to the legislature, and I applaud Governor Paterson for signing it into law today. State government should have a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to outdated and offensive terms, and this law sets that precedent loud and clear.

September 10, 2009
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