The New York State Legislature has passed the Equal Rights Amendment (“ERA”) for the second consecutive legislative session, paving the way for it to be a State-wide ballot proposal in November 2024. The ERA/Women’s Civil Rights Committee is strategizing to support passage of this long overdue landmark amendment to New York State’s Constitution. The Committee will be identifying and working with partners within and outside of The Women’s Bar of the State of New York (“WBASNY”) to educate voters of the importance of securing protections in our State Constitution based upon sex, including sexual identity, gender identity and gender expression, reproductive health care and autonomy, ethnicity, national origin and disability. In light of recent Supreme Court of the United State of America decisions changing the legal landscape of what constitutes fundamental rights protected by the federal government, women and other impacted groups must ensure these protections are enshrined on a state level. The Committee believes WBASNY members have a critical and unique role to play in reaching out to voters on a grassroots level to advocate for the passage of the New York State ERA. The Committee will address questions and concerns to ensure its passage. Additionally, our work will continue as issues effecting equal rights arise on both the Federal and State levels through legislation and judicial decisions. We look forward to working with WBASNY’s membership, Chapters and Committees.
Debra S. Cohen, Esq.
Louise A. Derevlany, Esq.