New York to allocate $35 million to help abortion providers

The move drew criticism from opponents, including the New York State Catholic Conference, who called it a “gross abuse of state resources and an insult to millions of New Yorkers.” Yorkers pro-life”.

The details: Hochul said the $35 million would come from the health commissioner’s emergency fund, meaning it won’t have to be reallocated in the budget that was finalized last month. (The Department of Health did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the total amount of the commissioner’s emergency fund or how that money has been used in the past.)

Of this funding, $25 million will be dedicated to expanding the capacity of abortion providers and access for patients seeking care. It will be distributed through direct grants and expense reimbursements to providers.

Hochul said the money will make New York “the first major state to launch this direct support for abortion providers.”

The remaining $10 million in grants will go toward improving security at reproductive health facilities, such as hiring security guards and purchasing and installing security systems.

“Nobody should feel in danger of accessing health care, abortion care, and nobody should feel in danger of providing that health care,” Hochul said. “We need to be proactive, we need to put these security measures in place now.”

What they said: Sen. Liz Krueger, a Manhattan Democrat and sponsor of several abortion-related bills in the Legislative Assembly, said the $35 million was a “great start” but “probably a down payment on other funds” that will be needed to help people, especially low-income people, who travel to New York for abortions.

Michelle Casey, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Central and Western New York, noted that her organization is already expanding clinics in Buffalo and Rochester to increase the number of people they can serve. The new funding, she said, “will help make this mission a reality.”

But Dennis Poust, executive director of the New York State Catholic Conference, argued that “inviting women from out of state to come here to abort their unborn children is a reminder breathtaking of the downfall of our culture”.

“We have to ask again, when will New York lawmakers begin to devote even a fraction of their rhetoric and policies to supporting women who want and need the resources to keep their babies?” he said in a statement. “The Bishops of New York State urge all Catholic New Yorkers to pray through her intercession for a change of heart for all elect, especially those who profess the Catholic faith, and for the building of a culture of life in our state”.

And after: New York should have the $35 million in place by the time the Supreme Court issues its final decision, which is expected in June, Hochul said.

The state will issue an expedited application for vendor grant and reimbursement applications, the governor’s office noted. A request for proposals allowing organizations to apply for security funding is also expected to be released ahead of the Supreme Court’s final decision.

Additionally, Albany lawmakers are considering a series of bills to help strengthen abortion rights and access before the 2022 legislative session ends on June 2.

Assemblywoman Karines Reyes (D-Bronx), who also joined Hochul for Tuesday’s event, said lawmakers will continue to work with the governor “to ensure that all women have these resources at handy”.

Hochul said provider funding “is not our first countermeasure in the fight against abortion access denial.”

“We will do whatever it takes to defend the rights, not just of women in New York, but of women across the country,” she said.


Politico

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