Hundreds rally in Albany to support women’s reproductive rights

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ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Thousands of activists rallied for abortion justice during Women’s March rallies across the country on Saturday. New York State Governor Kathy Hochul, local leaders and hundreds of people gathered at West Capitol Park in Albany to rally for reproductive rights.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott put his signature on a state abortion bill that went into effect in September. The law bans abortions as early as six weeks of pregnancy. “Knowing that what we’re seeing happen in Texas right now I think is a real warning for so many people, like oh this is what the world could look like if we went back in time,” says Chelly Hegan, CEO/President of Upper Hudson Planned Parenthood.

In support of women’s reproductive rights, hundreds were decked out in pink, including Governor Kathy Hochul. “As your first female governor ever in the State of New York, I will protect those rights — I will make the torch glow brighter as I pass it on to the next generation.”

“We need to stand up, we cannot be silent on this,” says Margo Singer with the ‎League of Women Voters of Rensselaer County.

“I am 20 years old. I am a woman and I never know what’s going to happen to me and if no one stands up for me, I need to stand up for myself,” says Caitlin Cronin, student at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. “We want to make our voices heard wherever we can. The fact that our community is making this an important issue — there was absolutely no brainer we had to be here and we have to show we are going to be apart of this movement and do whatever it takes,” says Hannah Pucci, student at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Men and women of all different ages stood in unity to show their support on women’s rights. “…Get women rights, equal access to healthcare which is not only abortion access to access to contraception, sexual education and other things that are important to defend women’s bodies,” says Courteney St. Ostil, supporter of women’s rights.

Some women even shared their personal experiences at Saturday’s rally. “I can’t even imagine where my life would be if I did not have an abortion and the effects it would have had on my life. Because of that, I have to stand and say I have to support bans off my body,” says Starletta Smith, Executive director for YWCA of the Greater Capital Region.

“We are here for rights, human rights for everyone and that’s the beginning and end of all of this. When one right is impeded on from one, it’s impeded on everyone,” says Starletta.

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