|The 2020 Washington legislative session is over!
The Legislature adjourned yesterday, bringing a close to this year’s session. Despite working under very tight time constraints and a mounting public health crisis, the Legislature got an enormous amount of work done this year.
WSCADV started this session with four top priority bills. We are thrilled to report that the Legislature passed three of these bills – as well as many others that we supported. And with the help of so many advocates, we were also able to persuade the Legislature not to pass the one bill that we opposed this session.
Our three priority bills that are now awaiting signature by the Governor are:
SB 5164, which will provide food, medical, and cash assistance to immigrant survivors of human trafficking and other serious crimes.
SB 5395, requiring all public schools in Washington to provide comprehensive sexual health education, including information about consent and healthy relationships. Opponents of this bill are now lobbying the Governor to veto it. If you have a moment, please let the Governor know that you support this bill!
HB 2567, prohibiting warrantless arrests of people in Washington State courthouses. This bill was urgently needed to protect the safety of immigrant survivors of abuse, and our communities as a whole.
Our priority bill that did not pass this session – the Working Families Tax Credit – remains a priority of ours. We will continue to educate legislators about the need to increase economic stability for survivors, and will be back advocating for this next session.
Other bills WSCADV supported that passed this session:
- HB 2441 and SB 6478 to improve access to Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF);
- HB 2473 clarifying language in several parts of the Washington code to ensure intimate partner violence is included in the legal definitions of domestic violence;
- HB 2793 – the Clean Slate Act, which clears qualifying criminal records for people who remain crime free for a set period of time;
- SB 6128, extending Medicaid to 12 months postpartum;
- SB 6158 to ensure hospitals and clinics provide victims of sexual assault with a coordinated community response to care; and
- SB 6268, preventing abusive litigation between intimate partners.
Our thanks again to everyone who responded to our action alerts earlier this session to educate legislators about a bill that sought to require early mediation in family law cases involving children. Your voices made the difference to prevent this bill from passing! We will keep working to help educate legislators and other stakeholders about this issue in the coming year.
Want to know more about what happened in Olympia this session? Sign up today for our Legislative Wrap Up Webinar on April 2nd. We’ll have lots of information to share about the bills that passed and what they mean for survivors in your community.