Weekly Round-Up: January 31st, 2014


~Adoption was ruled “neither necessary nor available” for a lesbian mother of a child, who was married to the biological mother at the time of the child’s birth, and who wished to make her legal relationship to her child more secure. While the legal relationship to the child is recognized in New York the couple is concerned about what will happen if they travel to a state where same-sex marriage is not recognized. The decision states that since the non-biological mother is listed on the birth certificate and the women were married at the time of the child’s birth, adoption is not an option for the family.  For an article discussing the case, please click here. (NYTimes) The case can be found here. (New York Law Journal)


~Mayor de Blasio released his plan for implementing universal pre-k in New York City.  As he has previously stated, this plan would be funded by a new personal income tax on New York City’s top earners.  Despite his plan and resolve, Mayor de Blasio must now rely on New York State government to approve a measure to raise personal income taxes.  Governor Cuomo in his recent State of the State echoed his desire for universal pre-k but stated that it should be instituted statewide through other measures that do not require a raise in personal income tax.  For the City’s announcement of the plan, please click here. (NYC.gov)

State of the Union

~President Obama gave his State of the Union address earlier this week.  In his address, he mentioned many issues related to family law such as education reform, work equality, and immigration to name a few.  In his speech, he spoke about universal pre-k, which has received significant public attention in New York. For a complete copy of the transcript please click here.

~A New York City public high school student, the Washington Heights Expeditionary Learning School (WHEELS), and the non-profit organization Blue Engine received national attention from President Obama during the State of the Union and a speech about college opportunity.  Blue Engine recruits and hires recent college graduates and trains them to work with low-income high school students to prepare the students for applying to and succeeding in college. President Obama illustrated the success of the Blue Engine program by spotlighting a student, Estiven Rodriguez, who started high-school when the program began and is now a Senior applying for colleges. To see the State of the Union excerpt click here.  (Chalkbeat New York)