Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis joins Minority Leader Brian M. Kolb (R,C-Canandaigua) at a press conference urging the Assembly Majority to take action on the Womens Equality Agenda.
Today, Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis (R,C,I-Brooklyn/Staten Island) joined Assembly Minority Leader Brian M. Kolb (R,C-Canandaigua) and their colleagues in the Minority Conference at an event highlighting the need to put the comprehensive Womens Equality Agenda at the forefront of the 2015 Legislative Session agenda. The Minority members called for the bills, which would help deliver equality and protection for New Yorks women, to be brought to the floor separately and immediately to be debated and voted on. Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver has refused to bring the bills to the floor separately to be debated on merit, and, instead, has bundled them in an omnibus package that includes a controversial abortion expansion measure the State Senate refuses to take up.
The 2015 session brings a much-needed, renewed opportunity to enhance protection for the women in our state, said Malliotakis. Yesterday, the Senate took immediate action and passed eight bills for the third year in a row to provide protection from domestic violence and discrimination, among other measures. We need to work together to put an end to the irresponsible delay of womens equality reform. It is time for the Assembly Majority to stop playing political games, bring each individual bill to the floor for debate and a vote, and let democracy take place.
For the third year in a row, the Senate has passed eight bills included in Gov. Cuomo's Womens Equality Agenda. Over that same three-year period, the Assembly has failed to take appropriate action due to the Majoritys refusal to take up the bills individually.
I applaud my colleagues in the Senate for putting the Womens Equality Agenda at the top of their priorities this year, continued Malliotakis. I would especially like to highlight the Trafficking Victims Protection and Justice Act (S.7) sponsored by Sen. Andrew Lanza (R-Staten Island). Human trafficking is a serious problem here in New York, and we must hold traffickers and buyers accountable by increasing the criminal penalty for sex trafficking. I applaud Sen. Lanza for his continued commitment to passing this legislation to give thousands of innocent victims the help they desperately need.
In addition to putting an end to human trafficking, the comprehensive eight-bill package also includes measures to ensure equal pay for equal work; combat sexual harassment in the workplace; end gender discrimination in employment, housing and credit decisions; make reasonable work accommodations available for pregnant women; and provide stronger protections for domestic violence victims.