Senator Huntley: Safeguard Reproductive Rights For All New York Women

Shirley L. Huntley

January 25, 2007

State Senator Shirley L. Huntley (D-Queens) reminds New Yorkers that despite the recent 34th anniversary of an historic Supreme Court decision upholding a woman’s right to make her own reproductive health choices, access to safe and legal abortion services remains in jeopardy.

"While the importance of the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade ruling should not be underestimated, it would be an even greater mistake to underestimate the forces at work in our country today to limit or overhaul the meaning and authority of that decision," said Senator Huntley.

"We cannot let our guard down and we cannot allow those who fundamentally oppose freedom of choice to continue contriving ways of circumventing and eroding what many consider settled law, myself included," the Queens lawmaker added.

Reiterating the Senate Democratic Conference’s general support of reproductive choice, Senator Huntley noted that opposition remains firm, even decades after the Supreme Court issued its landmark decision in Roe v. Wade. Nationally, efforts to restrict or outlaw abortion continue. Some fear the battle is just now heating up.

"While the state and federal courts are numbered with defenders of the law as it now stands, the Supreme Court continues to tilt in a direction that is hostile to reproductive choice," Senator Huntley remarked. "No other Supreme Court precedent is treated with the same degree of dismissal that Roe v. Wade has endured throughout its over thirty-year history, and so we must be vigilant in our efforts to defend it."

"Over the years, women have come to rely upon the many institutions supporting reproductive planning services that have arisen in response to Roe v. Wade," said Senator Huntley. "Any attempt to weaken existing law diminishes the good work of these institutions in saving women’s lives. We cannot allow that to happen."

"Three decades ago, many of us thought that we had finally overcome restrictions that endangered the health and well-being of countless women," Senator Huntley concluded. "It is extraordinary to think that this issue continues to divide us today."