Monday, March 27, 2023


Mobilizing Georgia voters in a non-election year is crucial for voting rights groups, Philadelphians over 50 will play a major role in the mayoral primary, and the EPA is finalizing a new air quality rule.


Michigan becomes the first state in decades to repeal a "right to work" law, death penalty opponents say President Biden is not keeping campaign promises to halt federal executions, and more states move to weaken child labor protection laws.


Finding childcare is a struggle everywhere, prompting North Carolina's Transylvania County to try a new approach. Maine is slowly building-out broadband access, but disagreements remain over whether local versus national companies should get the contracts, and specialty apps like "Farmers Dating" help those in small communities connect online.

Legislation Would Expand NY Medication Abortion Access


Friday, January 27, 2023   

New York pharmacists would be able to dispense abortion medication under newly proposed legislation, and a person could get the prescription from a physician online or by mail.

This comes after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued new guidance allowing retail pharmacies to sell abortion pills.

According to the Guttmacher Institute, medication abortions made up 54% of all abortions in the country in 2020.

State Assemblywoman Amy Paulin, D-Scarsdale, the bill's author, said it hasn't been filed yet, but if it passes, it should help people who don't want to visit an abortion clinic.

"If you can walk into a pharmacy and get this medication over the counter, you're much more likely to do it," she said. "Not everybody's going to go to a provider; not everyone feels comfortable. And providers are doing this with telehealth, so it doesn't require an exam."

The bill is part of a larger push by New York elected officials to expand abortion services in the state. In anticipation of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that ended federal abortion rights last June, Gov. Kathy Hochul signed a far-reaching package of legislation to improve access, as well as $35 million allocated to support abortion providers in New York State's 2022 budget.

While the bill is still in its earliest stages, Paulin said she's ready to meet whatever challenges come when it is filed. Abortion opponents in New York have encouraged such alternatives as better family services and making adoption easier.

Paulin said she knows the work won't end with this bill, adding that she is eager to work on whatever comes next.

"I'm working closely with advocate groups, like Planned Parenthood and ACOG, so if barriers come up, we will immediately address them," she said. "I think right now, we're just exploring some of those barriers and we will be putting legislation in shortly to alleviate them."

Other upcoming legislation would have all SUNY and CUNY colleges and universities offer abortion care, new protections of personal data for anyone seeking an abortion, and increased doctor reimbursement rates for reproductive health-care services.

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During this year's ACA open-enrollment period, a record high of more than 16 million people signed up, with 4.4 million more enrolled for health insurance coverage since 2021, according to federal data. (Adobe Stock)

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