Congresswoman Slaughter has always been an advocate for women’s rights and equality. Whether it’s fighting for equal pay for equal work or as the co-chair of the House Pro-Choice Caucus, she has been a leader in protecting and advocating for progress on issues important to women.
As the mother of three girls, Congresswoman Slaughter knows what it takes to balance family and professional priorities. Equality under the law is a constitutional right, which is why Congresswoman Slaughter fights for women and family-friendly policies, such as affordable health care and equal economic opportunity.
- Economic Fairness and Equality: It’s hard to believe that today, women are still paid less than men for performing the same work. Congresswoman Slaughter supports legislation to ensure women earn equal pay for equal work. It is unacceptable that women who work full time earn, on average, only 77 cents for every dollar men earn. Digging into the numbers paints an even worse picture as African American women earn only 64 cents and Latinas earn only 56 cents for each dollar earned by a white male. She also believes family-friendly policies, such as paid family and sick leave, are common-sense solutions supported by both businesses and employees. Congresswoman Slaughter has also co-sponsored legislation to raise the minimum wage, which would overwhelmingly affect the 2/3 of low-wage workers who are women.
- Reproductive Rights: Congresswoman Slaughter believes women have the right to make their own health care choices, including the constitutional right to an abortion, a right guaranteed to women decades ago. As co-chair of the House Pro Choice Caucus, Congresswoman Slaughter is the leading voice in Congress protecting a woman’s right to choose and defending women’s reproductive freedoms from anti-abortion rights legislation.
- Military Sexual Assault: For years, Congresswoman Slaughter has been a leading advocate for military survivors of sexual assault and worked tirelessly to make the military improve their prevention and response efforts. Still, nearly 20,000 servicemembers report being raped or sexually assaulted each year, with many cases going unreported or unpursued by the military justice system. Our servicemembers who are survivors of rape and sexual assault deserve no less than respect, dignity, and a fair and honest system that they can trust. Congresswoman Slaughter will continue to fight for survivors and an impartial military justice system with an emphasis on prevention.
- Equal Access to Affordable Health Care: The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) was an important victory for Americans, especially women. Before the ACA, eight states and the District of Columbia considered domestic violence as a pre-existing condition and could deny coverage. Congresswoman Slaughter strongly opposes Republican efforts to dismantle and repeal the ACA. The ACA ended the practice of gender rating, where women were charged higher premiums for the same insurance policies as men; offers vital health services like well-women visits, breast and cervical cancer screenings, and a full range of contraceptive methods and domestic violence screenings at no cost.
- Rules Committee Chairwoman: Congresswoman Slaughter was the first female Chair of the House Committee on Rules, where she facilitated the passage of dozens of bills, including the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, and the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.
- Contraception and Birth Control Access: In response to the Supreme Court case Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc., which allowed an employer to deny coverage for certain types of contraceptive methods, Congresswoman Slaughter introduced the Not My Boss’s Business Bill, which would ensure that no corporation can choose to deny federally mandated health services.
- Violence Against Women Act (VAWA): Congresswoman Slaughter is an original author of this landmark legislation, the Violence Against Women Act, which has reduced cases of domestic violence by 67 percent since 1994. Congresswoman Slaughter was proud to be a lead advocate for the reauthorization of this transformative legislation in 2013 that notably included immigrant, LGBTQ, and Native American populations.
- Fair Pay: Congresswoman Slaughter was a lead co-sponsor of both the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which was signed into law by President Obama on January 29, 2009 and gives women the right to sue if they were discriminated against, and the Paycheck Fairness Act, which would ensure equal pay for equal work.
- Research Diversity and Funding: Congresswoman Slaughter dedicated the first $500 million in federal funds to breast cancer research at the National Institute of Health (NIH). Prior to 1993, all clinical trials at the NIH were being conducted only on white men. This meant that diseases killing thousands of women per year, like breast cancer or ovarian cancer, or those that disproportionately affect minorities, such as sickle cell anemia, were not being researched properly. Congresswoman Slaughter led the charge to fix this discrepancy, culminating in the NIH Revitalization Act of 1993, which mandated that the NIH include women and minorities in all human subject research. She continues to fight for full inclusion of women and minorities in research.
- Military Sexual Assault: In 2011, Congresswoman Slaughter re-introduced the Force Protection and Readiness Act. Four provisions of this legislation were included in the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012. These provisions all seek to increase the resources available to soldiers to help prevent sexual assault and support survivors. Importantly, this legislation ensures that survivors who request a base or organization transfer must have their request considered within 72 hours, and if the request is denied, it is automatically reviewed by an officer higher in the chain of command. Additionally, the legislation guarantees survivors a copy of the court martial proceeding regarding their case, which allows them to seek veterans’ benefits in the future.
- Preventing Sex Trafficking and Strengthening Families Act: Provisions of legislation introduced by Congresswoman Slaughter were included in the Preventing Sex Trafficking and Strengthening Families Act, which became law in 2014. The law ensures child welfare agencies can properly identify exploited children; train child protective services workers; and connect child victims to specialized recovery services. It will benefit organizations across the country, including The Center for Youth in Rochester.
More on Women
WASHINGTON, DC — On the House Floor today, Congresswoman Louise M. Slaughter (NY-25) denounced Congressional Republicans’ latest anti-woman and anti-choice attack. H.R. 4712 is an unnecessary and dangerous bill that attempts to intimidate health care professionals out of providing constitutionally-guaranteed abortion care. Slaughter is co-chair of the Congressional Pro Choice Caucus.
WASHINGTON, DC — On the House Floor today, Congresswoman Louise M. Slaughter (NY-25) denounced Republican Congressional leaders for failing to take action on urgent national priorities as the House considers its fourth short-term spending deal since the end of the prior fiscal year in September.
WASHINGTON, DC — In response to reports that the Trump administration will soon allow health workers to refuse to participate in healthcare they object to, including constitutionally-protected abortions, healthcare for transgender patients, and other services, the co-chairs of the Congressional Pro-Choice Caucus, Representatives Diana DeGette (D-CO) and Louise Slaughter (D-NY), issued the following statement:
This year might have just come to a close, but there are many key issues on our national agenda that are gaining steam as we head into the New Year. Everything from immigration and children’s health insurance to proposed cuts to the social safety net are all on the docket for 2018.
WASHINGTON, DC — Congresswoman Louise Slaughter (NY-25) and Congresswoman Diana DeGette (CO-1), co-chairs of the Congressional Pro-Choice Caucus, today blasted the Trump administration for continuing to prevent immigrant minors in federal shelters from accessing safe and legal reproductive health services even in cases of rape and incest.
In the classroom, on the playing field, the laboratory and everywhere else, women and men should have equal access to the resources they need to succeed. This is something I’ve said and worked toward throughout my career.
WASHINGTON, DC — Ahead of a House Judiciary Subcommittee hearing today, Reps. Louise Slaughter (D-NY) and Diana DeGette (D-CO), co-chairs of the Congressional Pro Choice Caucus, condemned an unconstitutional bill introduced by Rep. Steve King (R-IA) that would ban abortion after six weeks. This proposed abortion ban is so extreme it would apply to women who do not even know they are pregnant yet, intentionally preventing them from exercising their constitutional right to access abortion services.
WASHINGTON, DC — Pro-choice leaders in Congress, led by Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), Pro-Choice Caucus Co-Chairs Diana DeGette (D-CO) and Louise Slaughter (D-NY), and Congresswoman Nita Lowey (D-NY), today called on President Donald J. Trump to reverse his recent moves to limit women's access to birth control.
Washington, DC -- Four House leaders on women’s rights today introduced a bill to block recent Trump administration moves to limit women's access to birth control. Co-chairs of the Congressional Pro Choice Caucus Diana DeGette (D-CO) and Louise Slaughter (D-NY), along with Judy Chu (D-CA) and chair of the Democratic Women’s Working Group Lois Frankel (D-FL), authored the Protect Access to Birth Control Act to safeguard this right for every woman in America.