Monday, November 24, 2014

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Senate passes legislation requiring drivers to declare organ donor status

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CNY/NNY/S. Tier: Senate passes legislation requiring drivers to declare organ donor status
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ALBANY, N.Y. -- It was a very special birthday celebration at the state Capitol, as 11-year-old Lauren Shields saw the bill that bears her name unanimously passed the Senate.

The law is aimed at increasing organ donations and would require New Yorkers filling out a driver's license application to decide whether to be an organ donor. Currently, applicants can leave that part of the form blank.

If the bill is signed into law, the application will not be processed without organ donation section completed. More than 9,300 people in New York are on the list for organ donations, but the state ranks last in organ donors signed up through the DMV program. Lawmakers say this legislation will improve those numbers.

"In the past week, since I was here, based on the averages, approximately 126 people died waiting for a transplant," said Shields. "This bill is so important because it's about saving lives.

The bill now moves to the Assembly.

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