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Local and state reaction to Roe v. Wade decision

NY Attorney General Letitia James and Gov. Kathy Hochul both spoke about making sure abortions remain legal in the state.

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Representatives across New York State are reacting to the Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.

New York State Attorney General Letitia James, who shared earlier this year that she had an abortion nearly two decades ago, says she will fight for low-income New Yorkers to have access. 

“Today’s ruling is a vicious, dangerous, and deliberate attack on our most basic freedom as humans. Every single person in this country should have the right to make their own decisions about their own bodies. But make no mistake: We will not go back to the inhumane and restrictive pre-Roe era. Regardless of the situation at the national level, New York will always be a safe haven for anyone seeking an abortion. I will work tirelessly to ensure that low-income New Yorkers and people from hostile states have access to the care they need and deserve. I will always fight to protect our right to make decisions about our own bodies and expand access to this critical and lifesaving care.”

Gov. Kathy Hochul released the following statement:

"Today, the Supreme Court took away the right of millions of Americans to make decisions about their own bodies. This decision is a grave injustice.

"I want everyone to know that abortion remains safe, accessible, and legal in New York. Just last month, in anticipation of this decision, I made an historic $35 million investment to support our state's network of abortion providers. Last week, thanks to the partnership of Majority Leader Stewart-Cousins and Speaker Heastie, I signed a landmark, nation-leading package of legislation that further protects the rights of patients and empowers reproductive healthcare providers.

"The right to reproductive healthcare is a fundamental human right. History shows us that when abortion is banned, abortion becomes unsafe for women. Low-income individuals and people of color will be harmed the most.

"New York has always been a beacon for those yearning to be free. Our state will always be a safe harbor for those seeking access to abortion care. To anyone who is working to deny abortion access, our message is clear: not here, not now, not ever."

U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand stated her concern for rights being taken away from women in the country.

“Today is a devastating day for all Americans. Today, more than half of the American population became second-class citizens, stripped of their constitutional right to privacy and bodily autonomy, regardless of where they live. 

"People in as many as 28 states will no longer have the right to control when, under what circumstances and with whom they want to have children. The right-wing justices of the Supreme Court have declared that they are no longer permitted to make decisions about their own bodies, their own families, and their own lives. 

"Not only is this ruling an insult to women everywhere, but it is an affront to the 6 in 10 Americans who support women’s reproductive freedom. 

"This ruling proves that our judicial system no longer represents the will of the American people and no longer represents logic, science, or equal justice under the law. 

"But while today’s ruling is a terrible setback in the fight for women’s equality, it does not diminish our resolve. In fact, it is time to get to work and fight for our rights. At the federal level Democrats will fight to eliminate the filibuster and enshrine reproductive freedom into law. At the state level we will work to enact pro-choice legislation and flip legislatures to guarantee reproductive rights for all Americans. And in states like New York where reproductive health care is safe and accessible, we will open our doors to those seeking care. 

We cannot allow nearly 50 years of progress for women’s rights to be erased in one fell swoop. We have simply come too far to turn back now.” 


Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown shared the following on Twitter:

Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz also took to Twitter:

New York State Senate Republican Leader Rob Ortt celebrated the decision: 

"Today’s ruling by the Supreme Court returns authority over reproductive health laws where they belong – to the states. As a result – this decision will have no impact on New York’s laws or access to reproductive health services for women and families in New York.

"Despite this reality, Albany politicians will sadly use this ruling to fear-monger and weaponize this issue for their own political gain. They will also attempt to expand abortion laws even further, forcing taxpayers to fund abortions, including late term abortions, for non-New Yorkers.

"Senate Republicans will continue to talk with the people of New York about solutions to the real crises facing New York families like violent crime, record high gas and food prices, and the quality of life across our state."

Congressman Brian Higgins released the following statement:

“The decision to overturn Roe v. Wade is a devastating and dangerous theft of women’s rights. This takes us fifty years backward, stripping away the personal freedom for all who are pregnant to make medical decisions that impact your body and your life. It will limit access to and criminalize reproductive health services in states across the country. This extreme infringement by the conservative court doesn’t reflect the views of a majority of Americans and sets a dangerous precedent that threatens the continued erosion of decades of progress on equal rights.”

New York State Senator Sean Ryan expressed the following in a released statement:

“The radical activist majority on the Supreme Court is hell-bent on destroying the right to privacy and the freedoms we as a nation are guaranteed by our Constitution. Today’s decision overturning Roe v. Wade is an appalling attack on women’s rights and, sadly, the court has signaled that this is just the beginning of their quest to tear our Constitution apart. Here in New York, we have already acted to protect the right to an abortion, and we will support women from across our nation and continue to do everything possible to protect reproductive choice. We will not be silent – we will fight back against this horrifying decision.”

The Catholic Bishops of New York State, including the Bishop of Buffalo Rev. Michael W. Fisher, issued this statement: 

In Buffalo, Oxford Pennant announced it would be closed Friday and give employees a paid day off.

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