Today, the state legislature passed the Equal Rights Amendment (S.8797B/A.10468A), a state constitutional amendment that creates new protections in our constitution against discrimination based on a person’s ethnicity, national origin, disability, and sex — including sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, pregnancy and pregnancy outcomes, and reproductive health care and autonomy. The legislature must pass the amendment in the next session before it can be sent to voters for ratification. A newly released poll shows that New Yorkers overwhelmingly support its passage.
In response, New York Civil Liberties Union Executive Director Donna Lieberman issued the following statement:
“By passing the Equal Rights Amendment, state leaders have set in motion a bold process to shore up New York’s constitutional protections and enshrine the rights of people of all backgrounds. With the fall of Roe and a nationwide campaign to criminalize abortion, as coordinated attacks mount against LGBTQ+ rights, and in the face of violent right-wing racist attacks, New York is acting to safeguard rights, meet the moment, and lead.
“The Equal Rights Amendment will build on existing state constitutional protections to expressly prohibit discrimination on the basis of pregnancy and pregnancy outcomes, sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression. With a rogue Supreme Court that has gutted the Voting Rights Act, ended the right to abortion, and made it clear that the worst attack on constitutional rights in history is far from over, adding the Equal Rights Amendment’s protections to our state constitution is critical. We will join with state leaders, our advocate partners, and engaged New Yorkers to build on today’s progress and fight for passage of this amendment again next session so that it comes before voters in 2024.”