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NYS introduces Fire Hate Act to protect people seeking abortion, gender affirming care

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Assembly Member Chris Burdick and State Senator Alessandra Biaggi have introduced Fire Act Bill to institute legal safeguards for individuals who travel to New York for reproductive or gender affirming healthcare.

This was disclosed in a statement on Tuesday May 3, 2022.

According to the statement, this legislation creates a cause of action for unlawful interference with protected rights under the Civil Rights Law. 

"This claim would cover any instances where a person exercised or attempted to exercise their rights under New York State law to obtain medical care – including terminating a pregnancy or receiving gender affirming care – and such action resulted in litigation or criminal charges in another state against them," the statement reads.

“In light of the SCOTUS draft majority opinion leak overturning Roe v. Wade, New York must hold strong as a safe haven for people seeking to exercise their rights. This bill will help protect anyone who receives an abortion in New York from unlawful interference in their rights. 

"We must move immediately to provide every protection possible to those seeking care, including the passage of this bill,” said Senator Alessandra Biaggi.  

Speaking about the legislation, Assemblymember Chris Burdick said, "Casting the constitution aside, the U.S. Supreme Court is poised to overturn Roe v Wade – 50 years of well-settled law, protecting a woman's right to choose. 

"In doing so, the Court will sanction an unthinkable, outrageous and dangerous divergence among the states on abortion rights. 

"I am proud to live in a state that recognizes that women are equal citizens under the law, with the right to make decisions about their own bodies. No woman should be forced to give birth to a child she is not ready or prepared to have."

He added, "New York must do everything possible not only to protect the rights of New Yorkers, but also to serve as a safe haven for those who come to New York to exercise those rights. We have a moral obligation to act and to act now."  

Kristen Browde, New York Attorney maintained that “With the leak of the draft Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade the forces that would threaten the rights of women and those in other marginalized communities across the nation will only be emboldened. 

"Since Congress seems unable to act on a national level, we’re fortunate that New York has legislators who will protect our rights – and who recognize that the right to control one’s own body must be preserved."

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