New York (State). Governor's Committee Appointed to Review New York State's Abortion Law.

Hide Profile

In January 1968, Governor Nelson Rockefeller appointed this 11-member Committee to review New York's Abortion Law and recommend appropriate changes in time for the upcoming legislative session. The Committee was comprised of 10 men and one woman including clergy, law experts, physicians, and others.

At the time of the Committee's appointment, New York was one of 39 states in which abortion was illegal except where necessary to preserve the mother's life. The Committee was to determine which other abortional acts, if any, should be exempt from criminal consequences (i.e. declared "non-criminal") and under what conditions.

The Committee studied the history of thought and legislation on abortion. They solicited information and opinions from representatives of medical, psychiatric, social, legal, theological, and other fields. A public hearing was held on February 29 at which 53 speakers presented their views. Among the speakers was Betty Friedan, President of the National Organization for Women and author of The Feminine Mystique (1963). Other speakers included clergy of various faiths, physicians, psychiatrists, university professors, attorneys, and representatives of the New York Civil Liberties Union, Planned Parenthood, other abortion reform groups, Right to Life, and social welfare organizations.

In its report to the Governor in March 1968, the Committee proposed new legislation expanding the grounds for legal abortion. A minority of the Committee submitted a dissenting report objecting to the expansion of grounds for legal abortion.

From the description of Committee reports and public hearing transcript, 1968. (New York State Archives). WorldCat record id: 79809392

Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Friedan, Betty. person
associatedWith Means, Cyril C., Jr. person
associatedWith National Organization for Women. corporateBody
associatedWith New York Civil Liberties Union. corporateBody
associatedWith New York (State). Executive Dept. corporateBody
associatedWith New York (State). Governor. corporateBody
associatedWith Planned Parenthood of New York City. corporateBody
associatedWith Right to Life Committee. corporateBody
Place Name Admin Code Country
New York (State)

Corporate Body

Related Descriptions


Ark ID: w62v9r11

SNAC ID: 36607983