This letter is addressed directly to Senator Kaplan in response to her comments on abortion during the community forum.
As someone who was endorsed by Planned Parenthood 2 years ago, you would think you would know their main message is “abortion rights are the floor, not the ceiling.”
Codifying abortion rights into New York State law was only the beginning and true reproductive justice comes with ensuring the access to abortion- especially among the poor and undocumented; two groups you have yet to address.
Without insurance, a surgical abortion at the Planned Parenthood Hempstead location costs $600. This is the absolute lowest price Planned Parenthood can offer the procedure at.
For those who are uninsured and making minimum wage, this is a cost that can be financially devastating. The millions of dollars in which you’ve allegedly donated to Planned Parenthood may keep the doors open but it does not extend to the vulnerable people who need medical care.
All abortions are life-saving, regardless of whether or not the pregnant person is in imminent danger. It is extremely out of touch to recommend poor individuals simply go to the hospital in order to receive abortion care.
Regardless of the fact hospitals do not perform elective abortions, it is classist to assume everyone is able to afford hospital services.
I have been a constituent of District 7 my entire life and have been an active volunteer with organizations like Planned Parenthood and NARAL Pro-Choice. I have dedicated my entire higher education career to being a leader in reproductive justice and put in countless hours researching and advocating for abortion justice. I know the difference between choice and access.
This is not about choice. You only have the agency to make the choice if you have also have the means. The poor and undocumented often do not. The only way to bridge the gap between rights and access is to make sure C4A and NYHA are signed into the legislature.
You are not a leader in reproductive rights when you refuse to say the word “abortion” and hide behind the word “choice.” You are not a leader in reproductive rights if you refuse to do the right thing.