Senator Peralta introduced legislation that would require certain state forms to allow New Yorkers to enroll in the Donate Life Registry
Senator José Peralta introduced legislation that would require many state forms and applications to include an area on the form allowing New Yorkers to enroll in the New York State Donate Life Registry.
The bill S.6022) hjas the potential to increase enrollments in New York State’s Donate Life Registry in order to help save more lives in our region which is ranked last nationwide per capita.
What follows are two articles and sources with respect to the introduction of this bill.
The legislation would require all applications for admission to state operated institutions of higher education and community colleges to include a space on forms for enrollment in the Donate Life Registry.
The bill also would require additional state-issued forms to offer New Yorkers the possibility to register as an organ donor, including:
Applications for teaching certifications/licenses issued by the New York State Department of Education;
Applications for admission to State University of New York and City University of New York;
Applications for professional licenses issued by the New York State Department of Education;
New York income tax forms;
Applications for participation in the State’s health care exchange;
Biennial registration renewals forms, filed by attorneys;
Applications for admission to practice law;
Applications for the registration and renewal of motor vehicles: and
Applications to conduct a profession or occupation as licensed by the New York Department of State.
Currently, New Yorkers interested in becoming organ donors can only do so by signing up for the Donate Life Registry at the Department of Motor Vehicles, on voter registration forms and separate standalone forms.
Sen. Jose Peralta on Tuesday announced a bill that would require a range of applications, including for public colleges, professional licenses, state-funded health insurance programs, and state income tax returns, to include a registration line for the “donate life registry” for organ, eye, and tissue donations.
Currently, it is limited mainly to driver license and voter registration forms.
New York ranks 49th in the nation for residents who register to be organ donors. Peralta said that just 24% of eligible New York residents are registered to donate their organs, compared to a national average of 54%.
“This is completely unacceptable,” said Peralta, who added he personally added his name to the registry last week.
He cited stats showing that in 2013, 1,670 New Yorkers received “life-saving organs.” But another 600 people died waiting.
The non-profit group LiveOnNy recently purchased an ad on the front of 250,000 MetroCards calling on transit riders to register to be organ donors.
Every two-and-a-half hours, a person’s name is added to the state’s organ transplant waiting list.
Though a Democrat, Peralta’s bill could find favor with new Senate GOP Majority Leader John Flanagan, who recently said he wants to make the issue of organ donation a top priority in next year’s legislative session.
Peralta Tuesday’s press conference is scheduled to feature Mariana Villarreal, a Hooters waitress in Georgia who made headlines earlier this year for donating her kidney to a longtime customer.
Peralta held his press conference at a Hooters in Manhattan.
“The equation is simple: one gift of organ donation can equal up to eight lives saved and more than 50 lives can be improved through tissue donation. Giving life is the best gift one can give,” Peralta said. “This is the highest form of altruism, the highest form of solidarity with others. In terms of healthcare, here in New York, we are in a state of emergency. Far too many New Yorkers are dying waiting for organs.
“This is an easy and common sense approach to increase the number of New Yorkers who become organ donors, simply by having the option to check the donate life registry box on multiple state forms”.
Peralta made the announcement as part of the National Minority Donor Awareness Week and was joined by donors’ family members, living organ donors and recipients, representatives from LiveOnNY, and special guest Mariana Villarreal, a Hooters Girl from Georgia who donated a kidney to a patron she knew for only for a few weeks.
Notably, the percentage of registered residents in Queens — which Peralta represents — is even lower than the state average at 11.25 percent.
This article was originally published here: