(New York, NY, Monday, November 23, 2020) – The Women’s Bar Association of the State of New York (WBASNY) is committed to “the fair and equal administration of justice,” as articulated in our 40-year-old mission. WBASNY opposes the decision of the administrative board of judges to reject the applications for certification of 46 Supreme Court justices, because the loss of these experienced justices threatens to limit communities’ access to justice. We understand that the Office of Court Administration has been asked to reduce its budget by 10% – approximately $300 million – as a result of the devastating economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic. We also acknowledge that the New York State Division of the Budget predicts a total loss of nearly $63 billion through fiscal year 2024, as a direct consequence of the pandemic. These are difficult times for all New Yorkers, in both the private and public sectors. However, any cost-cutting measures cannot be allowed to impede the effective and efficient administration of justice in our courts. Therefore, we urge the state to do all it can to safeguard access to justice during these challenging and uncertain economic times.
# # #
The Women’s Bar Association of the State of New York (WBASNY) is the professional membership organization of choice for more than 4,000 attorneys throughout New York State, and the largest statewide women’s bar association in the country. For four decades, WBASNY has been a singularly important resource for women lawyers, with professional networking, continuing legal education programming, leadership training, and advocacy for the rights of women, children, and families. Through involvement with WBASNY’s 20 regional chapters and its 40-plus substantive law committees, WBASNY’s members collaborate with one another on a variety of issues and perform public and community service, in furtherance of its mission to promote the advancement of the status of women in society and women in the legal profession; to promote the fair and equal administration of justice; and to act as a unified voice for its members with respect to issues of statewide, national and international significance to women generally and women attorneys in particular. WBASNY holds United Nations NGO status with the U.N.’s Department of Public Information, and Special Consultative status in association with the U.N. Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). WBASNY is also a founding member of the National Conference of Women’s Bar Associations.