Home / Pastoral / Public Policy / Defend Pregnancy Centers

Defend Pregnancy Centers

The Threat to Pregnancy Resource Centers

A law (Local Law 17) was passed in March 2011 by the New York City Council and signed by the Mayor that singles out pregnancy resource centers for harsh and discriminatory regulation.

In July 2011, a federal District Court judge issued a preliminary injunction, temporarily stopping the implementation of the New York City law that would have subjected pregnancy support centers to burdensome regulations and potentially heavy penalties. In early 2014, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals partially upheld the law, but struck down other significant parts.  Some of the pregnancy centers have already asked the Supreme Court to review that decision.  The Archdiocese opposed this legislation and supports the lawsuit challenging it.

The targets of this bill include a number of crisis pregnancy centers, all of which help pregnant women in need. These agencies offer services to poor expectant mothers who want help in having their baby. They provide spiritual, material and emotional support, and both before and after the babies are born. All provide these services completely free of charge -- and most receive no federal, state, or city tax dollars to support their work.

Note:  Although this bill would affect only the pregnancy resource centers in New York City, everyone in New York State should be aware of it. Pro-abortion advocates have introduced state-wide legislation that is even more far-reaching than the New York City law.  An adverse decision by the Second Circuit could thus have a negative impact on all of the centers in New York that help pregnant women choose life.

Background on Pregnancy Centers

Pregnancy service centers offer genuine assistance to pregnant women and new mothers who are in difficult circumstances or who are vulnerable to abortion.  For more information about the pregnancy resource centers in the New York City area, visit the website of the Pregnancy Services Network.  Click here for an extensive report on the good work being done by pregnancy resource centers nationwide.