Pro-Life Pregnancy Centers Suffer Legislative Loss

The Pregnancy Center Report Bill is a mean-spirited, anti-life bill that will allow the New York State Department of Health to harass pro-life pregnancy centers with onerous information requests. Sadly, this bill has passed both houses of the State Legislature and awaits action by Gov. Kathy Hochul, who is expected to sign it into law.

The Pregnancy Center Report Bill (Bill S.470-Hoylman/A.5499-Glick) will empower the New York State Department of Health to study and report on “the unmet health and resource needs facing pregnant women in New York” and the impact of pro-life pregnancy centers on women’s access to abortion. The bill would empower the Health Department to request and obtain information from pro-life pregnancy centers about their affiliations, funding sources, services, staff, and clients. Responding to these information requests will doubtless take time and resources away from the life-saving services provided by pro-life pregnancy centers. Furthermore, the information obtained from these requests could be used in a future effort to shut down pro-life pregnancy centers altogether.

As Albany Update previously noted, the State Assembly passed the Pregnancy Center Report Bill on April 4, 2022 by a vote of 101-45. Every Republican member of the Assembly voted against the bill except one: Asm. Michael Montesano (R-Glen Head). On the Democratic side, Asms. Brian Barnwell (D-Queens), Simcha Eichenstein (D-Brooklyn), Marianne Buttenschon (D-Marcy), and Angelo Santabarbara (D-Amsterdam) bravely swam against the tide by voting against the Pregnancy Center Report Bill. With the exception of Asms. Cathy Nolan (D-Queens) and Nader Sayegh (D-Yonkers), who were excused from the vote, all other Democratic members of the Assembly voted in favor of the legislation.

On May 31, the State Senate passed the Pregnancy Center Report Bill by a vote of 43-20. Every Republican member of the Senate voted against the bill except one: Sen. Phil Boyle (R-Bay Shore). Every Democratic member of the Senate voted in favor of the bill except one: Sen. Simcha Felder (D-Brooklyn).

New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms thanks the lawmakers who voted against this legislation. We also thank Sen. George Borrello (R-Sunset Bay) for speaking out against the bill on the Senate floor.