Share story

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Women’s reproductive health advocates are calling on New York officials to take steps to reduce the state’s maternal mortality rate among black women.

Planned Parenthood of New York leaders, state Assembly members and maternity health services providers held a news conference in Albany Monday to call for action to reduce the state’s national ranking of 30 out of 50 states when it comes to maternal deaths.

The advocates and lawmakers say black women in New York die of pregnancy-related causes almost four times as often as white women.

Legislation introduced by Assemblywoman Latoya Joyner of the Bronx would establish a maternal mortality review board to examine and reduce maternal deaths.

The maternal mortality initiatives are part of Planned Parenthood’s New York 2018 agenda.