Olympia Week 1 Recap
By Leslie Edwards | Jan. 18, 2018, 11:01 p.m.
The 2018 legislative session started last week and there is already a lot happening! With slim Democratic majorities in both chambers for the first time since 2012, women’s health champions in both chambers are eager to advance progressive policy proposals that have stagnated in a divided legislature. Breakfast After the Bell (HB 1508), important legislation that will make sure all students start their school day with a well-balanced meal, was the first bill to be passed by either chamber.
The Reproductive Health Access for All Act (SB 6105) is scheduled for a hearing on Monday January 22nd. Building on last year’s success expanding access to contraception through a bill requiring insurance to cover a full year’s supply of birth control, this bill will make sure that all people have access to sexual and reproductive health, regardless of gender, gender identity, income, or immigration status. This bill comes at a critical juncture when the rights of people of color, LGBTQ people, immigrants, and women are all under attack.
Join us on Monday the 22nd at 10 in Hearing Room 1 for a hearing on this critically important bill. RSVP here to join!
Washington Voting Rights Act (SB 6002) had a hearing this week and has moved out of committee. This bill will ensure all communities have a fair chance to have their voices heard and elect local candidates of their choice. This bill protects accountability and fairness in local democracies by fixing broken election systems that disenfranchise voters.
Voting rights advocates also plan to continue to advocate for HB 1513, a bill that would allow automatic voter pre-registration of 16- and 17-year-olds.