ALBANY – Sen. Joseph A. Griffo today helped passed bills designed to enhance women’s rights in New York.
The Senate passed a bill requiring employers to provide reasonable accommodations to employees with pregnancy-related medical conditions, as well as a bill to tough penalties against sex traffickers.
“Sad as it is to admit, pregnant women have risked their health too many times to do their job, especially if that job is at all physically strenuous,” said Griffo, R-Rome. “This bill doesn’t place a hardship on the employer. It merely requires a reasonable accommodation – such as a foot stool to rest or an additional break for water. It’s a very humane ask and it’s a fiscally conservative policy. Healthy moms mean healthy pregnancies, which reduces the cost of hospitalization and other services.”
Griffo added, “We’re writing a brighter chapter in the seedy story of human trafficking. Buying and selling human beings is inhumane. It’s disgusting. And we’re hopefully going to limit its prominence in New York with this legislation.”
Key provisions of the measure include increasing the accountability of traffickers and buyers by raising the penalty for sex trafficking to a class B violent felony; creating a felony-level sex offense called “aggravated patronizing a minor”; and aliging the penalties for patronizing a minor with those of statutory rape.
Both of these bills were passed by the Senate last year as part of the Women’s Equality Agenda. Both now await action in the Assembly.