Strengthening Women's Rights in New York

September 18, 2013

For the second year in a row, I am proud to report that the New York State Senate passed its Women's Equality Agenda, a momentous package of bills to further protect and ensure the rights of women in New York.

These landmark measures will empower women and break down barriers that perpetuate violence, discrimination, and inequality.

Unbelievably though, the State Assembly left Albany without even bothering to vote on these important bills, and they can't become law until the Assembly acts. We need YOUR help to move the Assembly to action!

The Senate's plan has been endorsed by many leading women's advocacy groups and includes a number of critically important initiatives that will strengthen women's rights and improve the quality of life for thousands of families throughout our great state. Our plan includes provisions to:

  • Ensure equal pay for equal work (S.5872)
  • Stop sexual harassment in the workplace (S.5873)
  • Allow abuse victims to electronically file orders of protection (S.5878)
  • Protect domestic violence victims from housing discrimination (S.5876)
  • Toughen human trafficking laws and protect victims (S.5879B)
  • End workplace pregnancy discrimination (S.5880)
  • Prohibit workplace discrimination because of family status (S.5875)
  • Allow recovery of attorney’s fees in successful sex discrimination cases (S.5874)
  • Strengthen orders of protection for victims of domestic abuse (PASSED INTO LAW, S.5605)

We passed all nine of these bills last year and again this year, however, the State Assembly has failed to act on all but one.

But we haven't given up and will continue to push for this important legislation's passage.

One of the key goals of this package is an Equal Pay for Women provision which will help women finally achieve the dream of true pay equality in the workplace.

Also, let me be clear. Our local Assemblyman joins me in fully supporting our nine-point Women's Equality Agenda, including Equal Pay for Women, and is prepared to vote 'yes' on the Senate bills if given a chance. And Governor Cuomo is ready to sign the Senate's legislation into law if the Assembly acts.

Unfortunately, the downstate leadership of the State Assembly refuses to let the Assembly vote on each of our nine bills. By doing so, they are turning their back on millions of women across New York State. To have your voice heard so we can achieve equal pay for women, click here to sign my online Equal Pay for Women petition and visit to tell the Assembly Speaker to stop playing politics with women's rights and pass the Senate's Women's Equality Agenda!

Your input will help to send a loud and clear message that the time for partisan politics is over, and the time to pass this important legislation is now.