Leading NY Advocacy Orgs Celebrate Inclusion of Reproductive Equity Fund in NY State Budget


April 29, 2024

Contact: [email protected]

New York – The New York State Assembly enacted the 2024-2025 state budget, which codified the Reproductive Freedom and Equity Program (RFEP) and included an additional $1 million dollars in funding for the program — bringing total funding to $26 million, a move reproductive freedom advocates celebrated. The RFEP will provide grants to abortion providers and abortion funds to support access to care.

The RFEP will be housed within the NYS Department of Health and will provide the opportunity for abortion funds —including the New York Abortion Access Fund (NYAAF), an abortion fund working directly with people seeking care — to seek grant funding. In 2023, NYAAF – New York’s only statewide abortion fund — moved $1.8 million to directly fund abortion care for patients in New York and supported over 1,800 callers. The RFEP will create a sustainable funding mechanism for abortion funds and clinics at a time when the disastrous impacts of the national abortion access crisis are rippling across the country and donations to abortion funds have dramatically decreased.

While this was a critical step in helping to solidify New York’s abortion access infrastructure, the version of the RFEP in the approved budget did not include funding for practical support organizations or capital investments.  Even with the RFEP, providers delivering abortion care continue to be underfunded and patients continue to face barriers accessing this care. The coalition has declared its support to continue fighting for these components so that New York can become a true abortion access state.

Statement from Randi Gregory, Vice President of Political and Government Affairs, National Institute for Reproductive Health (NIRH) and its Action Fund: “Codifying and adding additional funding to the Reproductive Freedom and Equity Program is a needed step for those seeking abortion care and an important step for the state of New York in building a more solid abortion care infrastructure. We look forward to working in coalition with elected leaders and other organizations to build off of this progress.”

Statement from Chelsea Williams-Diggs, Executive Director of the New York Abortion Access Fund (NYAAF): “We are relieved to see the inclusion of the Reproductive Freedom and Equity Program funding in New York’s budget. Every day, we witness firsthand how financial barriers create obstacles to accessing abortion for the most marginalized New Yorkers and the growing number of people traveling to New York from across the country for care. With a worsening crisis of abortion access nationwide, New York must live up to its reputation as an ‘access state’ by directly allocating state resources to those who need abortion care. While there is more work to be done to bridge the gap between the right to an abortion in New York and actual access for all, this is a great step in the right direction.”

Statement from State Senator Cordell Cleare, Senate Sponsor of the RFEF Legislation: “I am pleased to see this essential program finally become law and I will make it my mission to expand, enrich and empower this fund in each succeeding year.  This victory for common sense, equitable policy is only possible due to the tireless and undaunted efforts of a coalition of the very finest advocates.  Thank You, one and all!” 

Statement from Quadira Coles, Director of Policy, Girls for Gender Equity: “We are thrilled to celebrate the passage of the Reproductive Freedom and Equity Fund in the New York State Budget. Not only is this a huge win for reproductive and sexual health access in New York State, but it is a testament to the tireless efforts of BIPOC organizations and their dedicated members, whose unwavering commitment and advocacy have ensured that every impacted experience was reflected in this work.Girls for Gender Equity proudly included Black girls and gender-expansive youth of color in this advocacy effort, conveying to legislators the crucial need for substantial state investments in organizations capable of supporting youth in their reproductive and sexual health needs. We will continue to provide platforms for their stories and for them to promote solutions, such as the Reproductive Freedom and Equity Fund, until New York ensures comprehensive access to reproductive and sexual health care for all.”

Statement from Robin Chappelle Golston, President & CEO, Planned Parenthood Empire State Acts: “Planned Parenthood Empire State Acts is proud to see the inclusion of the Reproductive Freedom of Equity Grant Program in this year’s budget. This action puts into our state law a longstanding commitment to investing in abortion access for all who need it. We would like to thank Assemblymember Jessica González-Rojas and Senator Cordell Cleare for their leadership. As we continue to face new and evolving challenges to abortion rights and reproductive freedom, establishing the Reproductive Freedom and Equity Grant Program will facilitate care for New Yorkers, support New York abortion funds, and strengthen the provider network.” 

Statement from Allie Bohm, senior policy counsel at the New York Civil Liberties Union: “By enacting the Reproductive Freedom and Equity Program, the state took a historic step to make abortion rights a reality for everyone in our state. This program creates a sustainable state funding mechanism for abortion providers and abortion funds, bringing us closer to a world where New Yorkers can freely make decisions about their futures and bodies. While this is an important step in the right direction, our lawmakers must do more to remove all barriers limiting abortion accessibility, including by investing in practical support for patients seeking care and capital improvements for abortion providers.”



The National Institute for Reproductive Health (NIRH) and the National Institute for Reproductive Health Action Fund (NIRH Action Fund) are advocacy groups that fight to protect and advance access to just and equitable reproductive healthcare and build political power for reproductive freedom. We do this by working hand-in-hand with reproductive health, rights, and justice organizations in states and cities across the country to build coalitions, launch campaigns, change policy, and elect candidates who stand up for everyone’s right to control their reproductive lives. For more than four decades, our strategy has been to go on the offensive to pass laws that safeguard reproductive freedom. We work in the communities where change is needed, so the fabric of reproductive freedom becomes harder to tear apart.