About Congresswoman Slaughter
Awards and Honors Received
Congresswoman Louise McIntosh Slaughter is serving her eighth
term in the U.S. House of Representatives, representing the 28th
Congressional District of New York State. Her district includes
the city of Rochester and most of its Monroe County suburbs.
Described as "one of the most powerful women in Congress,"
Congresswoman Slaughter sits on the influential House
Rules Committee and its Subcommittee on Rules and Organization
of the House. She is Vice-Chairwoman of the Research Committee of
the Democratic leadership and serves as whip-at-large.
In her 14 years in the House, Congresswoman Slaughter has earned
a reputation as a strong proponent of progressive causes, as well as
a hard worker for local interests, especially the economic and
employment concerns of her district. She has been noted in her
district for "her strong constituent
On top of her success in ensuring low-cost carrier JetBlue's
arrival in Rochester, New York, Rep. Slaughter has emerged as a
national spokesperson for communities adversely impacted by high air
fares. In the 106th Congress, she led the effort to address the
issue, championing legislation that
would encourage airline competition and crack down on
anti-competitive practices. A strong promoter of small businesses,
Congresswoman Slaughter regularly holds conferences to help them
obtain capital and federal contracts.
She is dedicated to enhancing Rochester's business climate and
improving its infrastructure, remaining actively involved in
projects for which she has secured federal funds, including High
Technology of Rochester's business incubator, the Rochester
Harbor wave-surge barrier, the Center
for Optics Manufacturing, Rochester Institute of Technology's Centers
for Integrated Manufacturing Studies and Remanufacturing
and Resource Recovery, and the University of Rochester's Laboratory
for Laser Energetics.
She regularly goes to bat for such large companies as Kodak,
and Lomb, GRS, Gleason's, Hickey-Freeman
Communications and such smaller companies as Pal Plastics,
Dimension Technologies, Terry
Bicycles and Newtex
Industries. She was responsible for the enactment of permanent
tax incentives for the creation of new jobs in small and mid-size
Realizing that the quality of the workforce is strongly tied to
the education and well-being of our children, she introduced a measure
in the 106th Congress that would increase the availability and
affordability of quality before and after-school child care for
working families. It emphasized academics, artistic pursuits and
juvenile crime prevention.
In January 1999, she was named "Lay Educator of the
Year" by the Rochester Chapter of Phi Delta Kappa
International, the professional fraternity for men and women in
A microbiologist with a master's degree in public health, she is
intensely involved in health issues, especially those affecting
women. She is the author of widely supported legislation
that would protect consumers from discrimination by health insurance
providers based on their genetic makeup . The bill also would
protect the privacy of consumers' genetic information.
She also has won historic increases in funding for women's
health. She fought for legislation guaranteeing that women and
minorities are included in all federal health trials and establishes
of Research on Women's Health at the National Institutes of
Health. She has introduced a bill to direct the National Institutes
of Health to fund up to six centers nationwide that would focus on
women's health and the environment.
Concerned about the high incidence of colorectal cancer among
Americans, especially minorities, and the mistaken notion that
colorectal cancer is primarily a "man's disease,"
Congresswoman Slaughter launched a nationwide education and
prevention campaign to wage war on this number two cancer killer.
She introduced legislation that
would require health insurance companies to cover preventive
screening for colorectal cancer for all men and women over the
age of 50, and for individuals under the age of 50 at high risk for
She is responsible for passage of legislation
that established the first federal research and education programs
on DES, a drug prescribed to pregnant women from 1938 to 1971 in
the mistaken notion that it would prevent miscarriage. DES often
caused deformities and other health problems in the reproductive
systems of their children.
Congresswoman Slaughter has fought hard against government waste.
Most recently, she has introduced legislation to cut back on waste
and fraud in the Medicare program, targeting abuses
in durable medical equipment (e.g., catheters, wheelchairs,
ostomy supplies and walkers).
In an effort to reduce crime and promote justice at home and
abroad, Congresswoman Slaughter led the way on a bipartisan bill to
reduce the global trafficking in women and girls for the purpose
of sexual and other forms of exploitation. And she authored a bill
to allow American Holocaust survivors to seek monetary reparations
from Germany for their losses and suffering.
A leading advocate of women's rights, the Congresswoman passed legislation
to establish a Women's Rights National Historic Trail that
begins with a route between Boston and Buffalo, N.Y., focusing
initially on the New York segment of Rochester to Auburn.
Congresswoman Slaughter is a commissioner on the Commission
on Security and Cooperation in Europe. That body, also known as
the Helsinki Commission, is the American delegation to the
Organization on Security and Cooperation in Europe. This
international human rights organization promotes security and
cooperation among European nations and monitors compliance with the
Helsinki Accords. Slaughter is one of two women commissioners on the
21-member U.S. delegation.
In January 1998, the Congresswoman received the Award for
Outstanding Congressional Arts Leadership in the U.S. House of
Representatives from the U.S. Conference of Mayors and Americans
for the Arts. She is currently co-chair of the Congressional
In March 1998, she was presented the International Health
Awareness Network Recognition Award for her lifelong commitment to
women's equality at an International Women's Day Celebration at the
Congresswoman Slaughter vice chairs the Congressional Caucus on
Women's Issues and chairs the Congressional Ukrainian Caucus.
She is also a member of the Congressional Task Force on Tobacco
and Health, the Missing and Exploited Children's Caucus, the
Congressional Pro-Choice Caucus, the Congressional Coalition on
Population and Development, the Congressional Task Force on
International HIV/AIDS, the House Cancer Awareness Working Group,
the Congressional Biomedical Research Caucus, the Congressional Ad
Hoc Steering Committee on Telehealth, the Congressional Heart and
Stroke Coalition, the Medical Technology Caucus, the Congressional
Task Force on Organ and Tissue Donation, the Older Americans Caucus,
the Northeast Agriculture Caucus, the Congressional Ukrainian
Caucus, the Congressional Advisory Committee on Lyme Disease, the
Congressional Prevention Coalition and the Trade Working Group.
Finally, she is a board member of the Einstein
Institute, which educates judges on genetics issues in the
Elected in 1986, Congresswoman Slaughter has a Bachelor of
Science degree (1951) in microbiology and a Master of Science degree
(1953) in public health from the University
of Kentucky. Prior to entering Congress, she served in the
Monroe County (N.Y.) Legislature (1976-79); as regional coordinator
to then Secretary of State Mario Cuomo (1976-78) and to then Lt.
Gov. Mario Cuomo (1979-82); and in the New York Assembly (1982-86).
She was named House Legislator of the Year by the Vietnam Veterans
of America in 1992.
A native of Harlan County, Kentucky, Congresswoman Slaughter has
lived most of her life in Rochester's suburb of Fairport. She is
married to Robert Slaughter and has three daughters and six