The State Legislature is poised to strengthen abortion rights in New York. But not everyone is supporting the measure, and are voicing what they feel are very real concerns on the Reproducitve Health Act. 
The move by Albany to update existing abortion law worries groups like the Catholic Church. Jessica Shanahan works for the Rochester Diocese. She says the Diocese is opposed to the Reproductive Health Act, because it fears it would lead to an increase in late-term abortions. 

Shanahan says, “This legislation that the governor wants to pass and is committed to passing, will promote late-term abortion, because it will now be expanded to the health of the mother. 

The proposed legislation would install federal abortion protections into state law, and remove abortion from the medical code. Supporters have treid for years to get it passed, but critics successfully blocked it. Among other things, they do not like the language of the bill that more loosly defines the health of a mother, as reasons to terminate a pregnancy. 

“The fiscal health, the emotional health, the mental health of the mother, those could all be reasons to terminate a baby,” says Shanahan. 

But it is not just church groups who oppose the move. Feminists Choosing Life of New York does as well. 

Michele Sterlace-Accorsi, FCLNY Executive Director says, “The RHA just completely and utterly disregards humans in utero. It just completely disregards human life. We see abortion as a tool of oppression, rather than empowerment.”

Both Accorsi and Shanahan are confident the RHA bill will likely pass in Albany this year, but say they are at least doing what they can voicing opposition to it. The Diocese of Rochester has a petition online you can sign here:

FCLNY main site:

To learn more about the RHA, you can follow this link: