This past Monday, May 17, the Assembly Health Committee met through Zoom as the statehouse continues to operate under draconian emergency shutdown orders. One particular bill that was discussed in the public hearing that should be of concern to parents across the state is A5597. This would amend the current law that gives schools the ability to administrate student surveys on sensitive issues including sexual behaviors and attitudes, drug use, physical activity and eating habits.

Presently, schools in New Jersey must send home forms for parents to grant permission for their student to participate in these personal and probing sexual health surveys. According to the federal Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment, schools must allow parents to opt in or opt out, but no student is required to take part in these surveys.

The proposed change in New Jersey law would remove the requirement for parents to actively opt their student into the health surveys. Instead, every student would be passively opted into the survey unless their parent in writing requested for them to be excused from the survey. If a parent overlooks an email, misplaces an unopened letter, or the child forgets or even intentionally does not give their mom the opt out form – then the student will be surveyed about their sexual beliefs and activity.

What is the reason for this change? According to the language of the bill, not enough parents are giving schools the permission to ask their children these sex-based health questions. What do the bill sponsors recommend as the solution? Simple: stop asking the parents for their permission!

Jennie Lamon, of the New Jersey Principals and Supervisors Association, testified that this type of major change would further damage relationships the public schools have with parents. She expressed the level of mistrust and deception parents already feel will only be exacerbated by this overreach of state government to remove the parent once again from the equation!

I could not agree more.

I spoke to the policy director of the primary sponsor Assemblyman Herb Conaway last Friday about our concerns. Unfortunately, those concerns went unaddressed. Look for a future call to action if the bill is scheduled for a hearing in the Senate Health Committee.

Here are the votes of the Assembly Health Committee from this past Monday:

YES vote = I do not believe schools should ask parents for their permission

NO vote = I do believe schools should ask parents to actively grant permission

Herb Conaway, Delran (D) – Chair DeAnne DeFuccio, Cresskill (R)
Angelica Jimenez, West New York, (D) – Vice-Chair Nancy Munoz, Summit (R)
John Armato, Northfield (D) Erik Peterson, Clinton (R)
Daniel Benson, Hamilton Square (D) Brian Rumpf, Forked River (R)
Jamel Holley, Union (D)
Shanique Speight, Newark (D)
Sterley Stanley, East Brunswick (D)
Christopher Tully, Paramus (D)
Anthony Verrelli, Trenton (D)


Protecting your family,

Shawn Hyland
Executive Director

Dear Friends:

Family Policy Alliance of New Mexico is proud to be part of an alliance of state-based organizations working to advance and defend biblical values in government. This week, I was blessed to join my colleagues from the other states in Washington D.C. for a 3-day workshop covering some of the challenges and opportunities we face as family policy councils.

In one of our sessions, we discussed pro-life legislation and litigation, as well as the battle to preserve conscience protection for medical providers. This discussion reminded me of the challenges we face in New Mexico headed into the 2019 Legislative Session, including the effort to repeal one of our state’s only abortion laws. In case you missed it, last week, pro-abortion Democrats in the Legislature announced plans to introduce legislation to repeal an existing abortion statute which, among others things, protects hospitals and providers from recrimination when they refuse to offer or perform abortions on “moral and religious grounds.” And should it pass the House and Senate, Governor-Elect Michelle Lujan-Grisham has already stated: “…that would be something we would sign.”

This announcement came on the heals of a recent article exposing a shocking revelation regarding the transportation of pregnant minors to New Mexico. According to federal court documents, under the Obama administration, pregnant minors in federal custody were transported to New Mexico for abortions to circumvent other states’ parental notification and/or consent requirement laws. In 2014, for example, a minor girl at the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) requested an abortion, but did not want her parents to know she was pregnant. Because she was in a state with parental consent requirements, an ORR field specialist emailed other ORR staff members and explained, “This is why termination of pregnancies are done in New Mexico due to the fact that currently (by law) there is no parental consent requirement.”

With some of the fewest abortion restrictions in the nation, New Mexico is already notorious for its late-term abortion activity. Now we know that the federal government transported minors across state lines, into our state, for the sole purpose of obtaining abortions that would have been illegal in other states.

These realities beg the question—why would we attempt to further loosen our state’s abortion laws and force healthcare providers and faith-based hospital to perform abortions against their conscience?

 The strategy by the abortion industry and its supporters is clear—to remove all restrictions and prevent any attempt to regulate abortions in New Mexico, even if it means violating a person’s First Amendment rights.

Friends—we must stop this, and come January, we will have our opportunity!

I look forward to working with you.


Vince Torres
President and Executive Director


“And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.” –Galatians 6:9 (ESV)

Dear Friends:

It has been a busy season for the Family Policy Alliance of New Mexico Team, and much has happened since last week. Therefore, we present to you this week – the good, the bad, and the ugly – a legislative recap!

The Good. On Tuesday, Family Policy Alliance of New Mexico teamed up with New Mexico Prays to host “Pastors’ Day at the State Capitol.” More than 100 pastors and faith leaders, from various denominations and communities across New Mexico, participated in the event, which included a luncheon and prayer service in the Capitol Rotunda. Special guest speakers included Lt. Governor John Sanchez, several State Representatives, and Albuquerque Police Officer Ryan Holets who was recently recognized by President Trump during the State of the Union Address. Our Executive Director, Vince Torres, also addressed the pastors and spoke on the need for greater engagement from the church in government and public policy.

The Bad. In spite of our best efforts, two of our pro-life bills did not make it onto the Legislative Session agenda. House Bill 75 sought to protect infants who survive an abortion by requiring immediate medical care. Meanwhile, House Bill 76 would have prohibited late-term abortions on infants of 20 or more weeks, gestational age, with some exceptions. We want to thank the bills’ sponsors – Representatives Rod Montoya (R-San Juan), Yvette Herrell (R-Otero), and David Gallegos (R-Lea) – for their efforts to pass these very important pieces of legislation. We will be back next year!

The Ugly. By God’s grace, one of our pro-life bills did make it onto the agenda; however, on Saturday, it was voted down in its first committee hearing. House Bill 56, sponsored by Representatives Rick Little (R-Dona Ana & Otero) and David Gallegos (R-Lea), would have required that notification be given to a parent when their minor child obtains an abortion. As it stands, a minor girl can receive an abortion in New Mexico without her parents ever knowing about it, which is completely unconscionable, given the fact that she cannot receive an aspirin at school without parental notification and consent! The bill sponsors and expert witnesses provided compelling arguments in favor of the bill, including the need to protect minor girls who have been victims of rape, incest, or sexual abuse, and taken to an abortion facility by their abuser. Sex traffickers are known to frequently take young girls to abortion clinics to get rid of the evidence and adults have been caught taking minors across state lines to avoid parental notification or consent requirements. Sadly, these facts and many others fell on deaf ears, as a majority of the committee voted to table the measure. However, this is certainly not the end, and, again, we will be back next year!

We want to thank the many of you who responded to our action alerts and contacted the Governor and these legislators! With your help, we managed to get one of our legislative priorities (House Bill 56) on the agenda, which is especially difficult during a 30-day, short session. Not only that, we also managed to get House Bill 56 a hearing in spite of the committee chairman’s efforts to stall the bill. This produced a vote – one that these Representatives will now have to justify to their constituents and defend come election time later this year!

While the Legislative Session may be winding down, our efforts have really just begun! In the coming weeks, we will resume our efforts to motivate pastors and mobilize churches and citizens to take action and capitalize on the opportunities before us.

At the same time, we will turn some of our attention to the upcoming election, because the reality is this – if we cannot pass the legislation we need, we must change the makeup of the legislature.

In this effort and others, we hope and pray you will continue to join us on our mission as we pursue our vision for the “Land of Enchantment” – a state where God is honored, religious freedom flourishes, families thrive, and life is cherished!

God bless and have a great week!


The Family Policy Alliance of New Mexico Team


“Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves; ensure justice for those being crushed.” –Psalm 31:8 (NLT)

Dear Friends:

In case you missed it, the life issue has been in the news lately, from our state capital in Santa Fe, all the way to our nation’s capital in Washington D.C. This is great news and it signals a rapidly growing momentum in our efforts to protect the preborn children of our state and nation.

At the federal level, the U.S. House passed the “Born Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act” which requires medical care to be given to infants who survive an abortion. Our New Mexico delegation voted as follows – Congresswoman Michelle Lujan-Grisham – No; Congressman Steve Pearce – Yes; Congressman Ben Ray Lujan – No. The bill must now be voted on in the U.S. Senate.

Additionally, this week, the U.S. Senate held a vote on the “Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act” which would ban abortions after 20-weeks, with exceptions for incest, rape, and when the mother’s life is at risk. Research confirms that preborn children can experience pain by the time they reach 20 weeks old. And yet, America remains one of just seven countries that allow elective abortions after 20 weeks. Unfortunately, the bill failed to receive the 60 votes needed to move forward, and our New Mexico Senators, Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich, both voted “NO.”

 Locally, we are continuing to work closely with our allied organizations and legislators to advance pro-life legislation at the state level. As reported last week, Governor Martinez added House Bill 56 – the Parental Notification of Abortion Act – to the Legislative Session agenda. Did you know that minors cannot receive an aspirin at school without parental notification and consent, but they can obtain an abortion in our state without a parent being notified?

There are many reasons to support House Bill 56, but here are a few to consider and share with your friends:

Now, WE NEED YOUR HELP to move House Bill 56 forward! Before the bill can be voted on, it must go through the committee process and we need you to CONTACT the following members TODAY and URGE them to support the bill in the House Consumer and Public Affairs Committee:

Representative Eliseo Alcon (D-Cibola & McKinley)
(505) 986-4425

Representative Patricia Roybal-Caballero (D-Bernalillo)
(505) 986-4248

Representative Deborah Armstrong (D-Bernalillo)
(505) 986-4840

When you call and email them, ask them to “support and vote in favor of HB 56.”

Finally, please forward or share this message with friends. It is critical that these Representatives hear from as many New Mexicans as possible!

Thank you in advance for standing for life and helping us “Unleash Biblical Citizenship” in New Mexico!

The Family Policy Alliance of New Mexico Team


Great news! We spoke and Representative Alcon listened!

HB 56 has been scheduled for a committee hearing this Saturday, and your quick help is now needed to urge the following committee members to vote for the bill and move it forward!

Please contact all three Representatives today and urge them to vote for HB 56.

Reasons to support HB 56:

We’ve made it simple to communicate this request to Representatives Alcon, Roybal-Caballero, and Armstrong. Simply visit our Action Center and you can send this message in 30 seconds!

Also, please forward or share this message with friends. It’s important that these Representatives hear from as many people as possible.

Finally, after you’ve sent the message through our Action Center, please also call the Representatives’ offices at the numbers provided above and leave the same message.

Thank you for making your voice heard!

The Family Policy Alliance of New Mexico Team