A Statement by the NYAAF Board of Directors Addressing the Reproductive Violence Faced by Immigrants at ICE Detention Center in Georgia

September 16, 2020

Media contacts:
NYAAF Communications Co-Managers
May Sifuentes

Jenna McDavid


New York, NY—Yesterday, major media outlets reported allegations of forced sterilizations at an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention center in Ocilla, Georgia. A tip from nurse Dawn Wooten accused the Irwin County Detention Center of medically neglecting their mostly Spanish-speaking immigrant detainees as well as misinforming them about their health conditions. This resulted in an alarmingly high number of hysterectomies performed at the center. If true, these allegations robbed these individuals of their choice to decide if, when, and how to bear a child, and would constitute a violation of their human rights.

The New York Abortion Access Fund (NYAAF) is both horrified and angered by these allegations. As an organization, NYAAF believes that every person should be able to determine their own reproductive destiny and have access to the resources, rights, and respect to be able to do so — no matter who they are, or where they come from. The individuals detained at the Irwin County Detention Center were denied key aspects of a healthy, full life when they were allegedly sterilized without full consent. 

Latinx, Black, Indigenous, and immigrant communities have a long history of being subjected to reproductive violence and coercion by the United States government and other U.S.-based entities. As such, NYAAF joins activists, community leaders, and concerned citizens around the country in condemning the alleged actions of the Irwin County Detention Center and demand a full investigation. We will continue holding our government accountable and demanding justice for anyone whose bodily autonomy has been disrespected. 

Join the NYAAF Board of Directors!

Dear Community,

As an all-volunteer led organization, we at the New York Abortion Access Fund have a rotating Board of Directors who oversee the day-to-day work of running the organization, in partnership with our incredible intake case managers and other volunteers. As we prepare for several current members to close out their terms, we are thrilled to bring on a cohort of new Board Members to continue moving our critical work forward.

Click here to learn more about the available board roles. If you decide you’d like to apply, you can fill out the application form here.  Applications are due by May 15.

The work on the Board involves supporting callers by connecting them to resources and pledging funds toward the cost of their abortions, as well as participating in fundraising, advocacy, and managing our growing organization’s development. Individual Board Members oversee a particular facet of the organization, some with 1-2 Co-Managers, while also helping to guide NYAAF’s strategic direction, manage our budget responsibly, and jump into other work when needed. Joining the Board at this crucial moment provides an opportunity to guide NYAAF’s direction, sustainability, and impact.

We are looking for Board Members to fill roles in communications, fundraising, policy and advocacy, intake, and data management.

A strong candidate for the board will have skills related to one or more of these positions; a deep commitment to reproductive justice; and the enthusiasm to learn, grow, and work collectively with the board to advance NYAAF’s mission. We’re looking for vision and leadership, and leadership potential! No previous board experience is required for these positions.

After reviewing the applications, we will be in touch with select applicants for a casual video interview. We view this as a two-way process. Not only do we hope to find applicants who contribute to our needs, values, and mission, but we hope to be a good fit for your goals as a member of our Board of Directors.

Finally, we recognize that this is a really tough moment. Thinking about joining a board that requires a significant commitment may feel like too much right now, and we appreciate that. I have been returning to the words of Mariame Kaba, a prison abolitionist, activist, educator, and fellow New Yorker.

image: tweet from @prisonculture
Questions I regularly ask myself when I’m outraged by injustice:
1. What resources exist so I can better educate myself?
2. Who’s already doing work around this injustice?
3. Do I have the capacity to offer concrete support & help to them?
4. How can I be constructive?

In this moment, we will be constructive by funding abortions through the incredible mutual aid network you have helped us build. We hope you may also find it constructive to join us as a board member.

Abortion Is Essential Care

Dear friends,

I am a practicing OB/GYN in upstate New York, as well as a proud abortion provider. When I joined the NYAAF Board, I did so with the intent of making abortion safe and affordable for all New Yorkers, because I believe that abortion is essential health care.

In the wake of COVID-19, I still believe this. Although these are uncertain and, in many ways, unprecedented times, timely access to abortion care is critical and must be protected. No one’s reproductive decisions should be determined by their financial resources, or what the state deems “essential care.” Forcing someone to wait to get an abortion can dramatically increase the cost of the procedure, force them to travel across state lines, and in some cases, cut them off from care entirely due to state restrictions.

NYAAF will always be here to facilitate access to abortion, but the recent pandemic makes our presence even more critical. For people seeking abortion care, the impact of COVID-19 has made an already difficult situation harder. As businesses close and people lose their incomes, more people will need our help. To make matters worse, anti-abortion lawmakers in states like Texas, Ohio, Oklahoma, and Iowa are capitalizing on this public health crisis by introducing efforts to ban abortion entirely. We are here to support anyone who is unable to fully pay for an abortion – and that number of people will increase as restrictions continue.

Our goal is to never turn away a caller, but to accomplish that, we need your help. We know this is a stressful time, both mentally and financially, and we are deeply grateful for any contribution that you can give to connect our callers to abortion care. As a result of the pandemic, this year we had to cancel our biggest in-person fundraising event – but we’re still collecting donations online. Your gift will go directly to folks seeking access to care.

I will be practicing medicine to the fullest extent of my abilities in these troubling times – and that includes providing abortions. Just like the obstetric care I provide, abortion care must be timely, compassionate, and accessible for all. Please help me continue to provide that care by supporting NYAAF today.

In solidarity,

Corinne McLeod, MD
NYAAF Board of Directors, Upstate Manager

Bowl-a-Thon Update

As you know, the New York Abortion Access Fund is in the midst of BowlaThon season. We love this event. It’s our biggest fundraiser where we come together to raise most of our annual budget through grassroots fundraising. We relish the chance to see so many of you in person, for what is a key celebration in the state’s reproductive health, rights, and justice community.

Nevertheless, we have made the difficult decision to cancel the in-person part of BowlaThon this year due to the coronavirus outbreak. This is the right thing to do as an organization rooted in caring for our community and intervening in unjust health care systems.

Our callers still need support and the BowlaThon is still in full swing as a virtual grassroots fundraiser. We ask that you sign up or donate to advance our goal today. 

As an abortion funder, you know that our collective actions are what make a difference in shifting unjust systems and moving resources towards care, and fully harnessing the power of our collective action is at the heart of how we respond together to crises like COVID-19. We are rooted in this truth as we recommit to our vital mission of taking the hustle out of health care.

We remain focused on serving the people who call NYAAF every day. The economic and logistical barriers our callers face — inaccessible health care, income inequality, unaffordable housing, and racist immigration and criminal justice systems — are only exacerbated in times of a crisis like COVID-19.

Showing up for people seeking abortion care is a critical piece of a broader ecosystem of solidarity and mutual aid. We ask that you support the BowlaThon alongside these efforts, and if you are participating in mutual aid efforts you think we should know about, please share by responding to this email.

As always, we’re here for people most impacted by every attack on health access and bodily autonomy. We cannot do this work without you, especially in uncertain times. Please consider signing up as a grassroots fundraiser, or donating generously todayWe are grateful for your continued support of Bowlathon.

In solidarity,
The NYAAF Boar

We made history for abortion access!

Yesterday was a historic day for abortion access! New York will become the first city in the country to directly fund abortion by allocating $250,000 of the City’s 2020 budget to NYAAF. We are overjoyed!!

But, there’s still more work to be done. We are currently working with the New York City Council to understand the details of how and when these funds will be dispersed to NYAAF, and in the meantime… we know that the support we provide cannot wait. 

In the face of increasing attacks on abortion access throughout the country, New York City’s commitment to funding abortion sends a powerful message. We are proud to advance health equity and justice at this critical time. As it gets harder for people to access abortion in conservative states, NYC will likely see an increase in out-of-state folks seeking abortion. This city funding means NYAAF will be better-equipped to keep up with the increasing demand and to continue building a movement to lift barriers to abortion access here in New York and across the country.

For months, you supported our #FundAbortionNYC campaign by calling City Council members, signing petitions, and spreading the word. This campaign was a powerful reminder that our collective power can shift resources and culture, and create greater access to abortion care.

We are proud and grateful to have collaborated with the National Institute for Reproductive Health (NIRH) Action Fund, as well as partner organizations including WHARR, All* Above All, the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health New York LAN, Reproductive Health Access Project, Abortion Access Front, the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum NYC Chapter, and the National Council of Jewish Women New York. We are especially grateful to members of our own Advocacy & Organizing Committee, made up of Board Members and volunteers, who tirelessly pushed this work forward.

This incredible victory will reverberate throughout the nation, and allow us to better advance our mission to lift barriers to abortion access for people living in our traveling to New York.We could not be more proud to celebrate this victory with our community!

Also we’re in the New York Times!

Abortion bans may become law. Act NOW to make a difference.

As you may have heard or read, extreme abortion restrictions are rapidly moving through multiple state legislatures. On Wednesday, Alabama passed a law banning abortion without exception and imposing long criminal sentences on abortion providers. Similar bills have passed in Georgia, Mississippi, and Ohio, and Missouri could be next. While no full abortion bans have yet gone into effect, we know that this hostile climate is likely to create more barriers to abortion care in those states.

We are angry. But we find strength in the resilience of this movement, and what we can do when we stand together — and in this moment, we have an opportunity both to show solidarity with other states and to strengthen New York’s ability to remain a haven for safe and legal abortion for all who need it.  

NYAAF is proud to be a core member of the Fund Abortion NYC campaign, which is encouraging the New York City Council to include abortion funding in its 2020 budget. If the campaign is successful, the funds will go directly to NYAAF and will bolster our ability to serve clients living in or coming to New York for abortion care. This would make New York City the first city in the country to publicly fund abortion.

Help us keep abortion access a reality for all. Here’s how:

Thank you for standing with us and helping us make New York a powerful ally in the fight for reproductive justice for all.

The NYAAF Board of Directors

P.S. Another way to support the #FundAbortionNYC campaign is to tweet at City Council Speaker Corey Johnson (@NYCSpeakerCoJo) to urge him to publicly support the campaign to #FundAbortionNYC!

It’s Bowl-a-Thon Season

This year marks ten years (!!) of Bowl-A-Thon and we can’t wait to celebrate with you! We’re proud to have four great events taking place across the state this year; check them out here! If you haven’t yet put together your Bowl-A-Thon team or set up your fundraising page, now is the perfect time to do so.

We are planning a great bowler engagement event in the near future–keep your eyes out for information coming soon, because we’re excited to make this one of our best bowling seasons yet!

If you’re really fired up and ready to bowl, or want to do more to support abortion access this spring, we’d LOVE for you to join us as a volunteer! Volunteers help promote the event, support bowlers in their fundraising, outreach to local sponsors, and keep the final events running smoothly. If you’re interested in in joining us as a volunteer, please email bowlathon@nyaaf.org for more information on how to get involved.

Start your engines, invite your peeps, and get ready to bowl for abortion access! What are you waiting for?

In solidarity,
The NYAAF Board of Directors

Call for Board Members: Deadline extended to December 21, 2018!!

In early 2019, we are looking forward to bringing on a new Treasurer, Volunteer Manager, Communications Manager, and Upstate Co-Manager. Full descriptions of each of these roles and a link to the application are available here.

Joining the NYAAF Board of Directors is a fantastic opportunity to galvanize your commitment to reproductive justice, build and flex valuable skills, and expand your professional and personal networks. The NYAAF Board prides itself on sustaining a culture of inclusion, compassion, respect, and shared decision-making. We also strive to center the perspectives and priorities of those most impacted by restrictions to abortion access. No prior board experience or minimum financial contribution is required.

Please share this notice widely across your networks! We especially encourage members of our NYAAF family – case managers, volunteers, and supporters – to consider applying!

Here is what we’re looking for in a board member:

  • We seek vision and leadership (and leadership potential!).
  • We seek diversity in identity, perspective, and experience, including diversity in ethnicity, race, age, economic status, educational experience, status as a parent, ability, sexuality, gender identity, national origin, religious perspective, professional and career experience, and experience in accessing healthcare.
  • We strongly encourage women of color, trans and gender nonconforming people, and those who have experienced difficulty accessing necessary healthcare to apply.
  • We strongly encourage people who have had an abortion or have experience with abortion services to apply.
  • Board members are asked to serve for at least two years. When considering applying, please keep this time commitment in mind.

Applications are due December 21st!

Please direct any questions to kaitlyn@nyaaf.org To receive a response, inquiries must have “Inquiry: Call for Board Members” in the subject line.

Call for NYAAF Board of Directors


Call for NYAAF Board of Directors:  Fundraising Events Manager and Development Manager

Exciting news! The New York Abortion Access Fund (NYAAF) seeks two new Members for its Board of Directors. NYAAF’s Board Members are all volunteers operating together as a collective. The Board is responsible for all areas of NYAAF’s development, operations, and compliance.


NYAAF believes every individual should be able to determine their own reproductive destiny and have access to the resources, rights, and the respect to be able to do so. NYAAF’s mission is rooted in this belief: We support anyone who is unable to pay fully for an abortion and is living in or traveling to New York State by providing financial assistance and connections to other resources. NYAAF strives to conduct our work as part of the greater reproductive justice movement ensuring the full rights of all people, especially those who have traditionally struggled to access reproductive healthcare, including low-income people, people of color, immigrants, and LGBT and gender nonconforming people.  

The Board’s operations primarily consist of working directly with callers to pledge funds toward the cost of their abortion, fundraising, and managing our growing organization’s development.


Generally, we seek Board Members who can contribute to our Board with skills, passion, and dedication to NYAAF’s mission. Consider addressing any of the following as you shape your application:

  • We seek vision and leadership (and leadership potential!).
  • We seek diversity in identity, perspective, and experience, including diversity in ethnicity, race, age, economic status, educational experience, status as a parent, ability, sexuality, gender identity, national origin, religious perspective, professional and career experience, and experience in accessing healthcare.
  • We strongly encourage women of color, trans and gender nonconforming people, and those who have experienced difficulty accessing necessary healthcare to apply.
  • We strongly encourage people who have had an abortion or have experience with abortion services to apply.
  • A two-year commitment to serving as a Board Member is encouraged.


We seek to build our fundraising and intake teams and fill the following positions:

Fundraising Events Manager:

Responsibilities for this position include:

  • Set up online donation pages for fundraising events
  • Lead the coordination of fundraising events such as Bowl-a-Thon and NYAAF’s annual fundraising gala to establish and cultivate donor relationships, with the support of a planning committee, board members, and volunteers
  • Generate ideas for new major donor or institutional events
  • Organize volunteer-hosted fundraising events, including the development and implementation of home-hosting kits for individuals interested in hosting a NYAAF fundraiser
  • Plan out a calendar of yearly fundraising events in conjunction with the fundraising team (including the Fundraising Committee)
  • Coordinate external fundraising events

Intake Co-Manager:

Responsibilities for this position include:

  • Work with Intake Co-Manager to ensure that Intake lines are staffed with four volunteers weekly and and the Board of Directors is equipped with the knowledge needed to make informed approvals for over-budget requests on the hotline
  • Lead Intake Committee (comprised of board members and experienced case managers) to collaboratively move projects forward that support our work on the hotline and maintain a pipeline of informed and engaged volunteer case managers
  • Coordinate 1-2 annual case manager appreciation events
  • Maintain and update intake guidelines and policies
  • Update Salesforce clinic records and other funding resources used by case managers and our Intake Support team
  • Coordinate with Intake Co-Manager on 2-3 case manager trainings per year, and organize supplemental case manager continuing education events
  • Serve as point-person for case manager-board communications


Please fill out our application and upload your resume via Google Forms.   

We will be in touch with strong applicants for a casual interview and to discuss what serving on the Board might look like for you. We view this as a two-way process. Not only do we hope to find applicants who contribute to our needs, values, and mission, but we hope to be a good fit for your goals as a member of our Board of Directors.

We will be accepting applications through June 15th! To ensure time for careful review of all applications, please expect to hear from us with a final decision by July 15, 2018.


Please direct any questions to elena@nyaaf.org. To receive a response, inquiries must have “Inquiry: Call for Board Members” in the subject line.  

It’s The 9 Annual NYAAF Bowl-a-Thon!

We enthusiastically invite you to join us in our biggest, most fun, and most fabulous annual events: ?The Bowl-a-Thon!?

For eight years, NYAAF supporters like you have gotten together to form teams, raise money, and bowl like the amazing champions of abortion access they are. In 2017, over 500 NYAAF supporters helped us smash national records by raising over $250,000 for abortion access.

This year, in addition to our Bowl-a-Thon events in New York City and Buffalo, we’ll be expanding our festivities to Albany and Rochester to welcome even more of our upstate supporters into the fun! We’ve raised our 2018 fundraising goal to $300,000, and we want YOU to help us reach it!

State and federal governments continue to propose new restrictions on abortion access; the Bowl-a-Thon is a way to build and celebrate our collective power to fight those restrictions and continue to support the hundreds of individuals who call NYAAF each year.

So invite your friends, colleagues, and families to join you for music, food, prizes, community-building, and of course, some top-notch bowling! NYAAF will support bowlers with fundraising tips and tools leading up to the event. What are you waiting for? Register today!

?New York City
Sunday, April 22 from 11:00am – 4:00pm
Bowlmor Lanes
Register here!

Saturday, April 28th at 2pm
Delmar Lanes
Register here!

Sunday, April 29th, from 2:00pm – 4:00pm
Classic Lanes
Register here!

Thursday, April 26th from 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM.
Classic Lanes
Register here!