PROGRESO 2021 LEGISLATIVE AGENDA
Civil and Voting Rights
- Voting Rights Restorations for People Under Community Supervision (HB 1078 & SB 5086)
Sets people up for success when they re-enter their communities, Promotes racial justice by unlinking the fundamental right to vote from a criminal legal system that has proven racial biases. This bill Increases public safety by reducing recidivism, it has proven positive outcomes in 20 states, simplifies the current policy, and it makes it easier to implement and understand. We are supporting this bill in collaboration with the WA Voter Justice Coalition.
- Preclearance (Electoral Systems Change)
Preclearance will require that local governments vet any changes to their elections and voting processes with an impartial review to ensure the changes do not negatively impact voters of color. We are supporting this bill in collaboration with the WA Voter Justice Coalition.
- Increasing representation and voter participation in local elections (HB 1156)
Gives control to local electoral jurisdictions seeking to adopt ranked choice voting for local elections. This proposal offers two options: (1) A jurisdiction may eliminate the state-mandated low-turnout primary in favor of a single-general election conducted with ranked choice voting. (2) Alternatively, a jurisdiction may choose to hold a primary that boils down candidates to a list of FIVE candidates for a ranked-choice general election. We are supporting this bill in collaboration with the Fair Vote WA Coalition.
- Create Unemployment insurance Benefits for Undocumented Workers
Some 143,000 undocumented workers in Washington state are excluded from federal relief in these unprecedented times despite paying their fair share of taxes and working in the state’s essential industries. Mirroring a program similar to the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) and Unemployment Insurance (UI), our coalition: WA Immigrant Solidarity Network (WAISN) proposes a monthly flat rate benefit between $350-550 which includes strong privacy protections, be easy to navigate, and avoid public charge issues.
- End Debt Based License Suspension Bill
This legislation stops the suspension of driver’s licenses for unpaid fines and fees for civil moving violations, ensuring that public safety is the focus of our state’s scarce criminal justice resources—not punishing people who are “driving
while poor.” It also ensures that drivers keep their insurance, can get to work, and provide transportation for their families. Reforming these laws will increase fairness and cost effectiveness without sacrificing public safety.
- Tactics Bill (HB 1054)
The bill would establish requirements for tactics and equipment used by police officers. The bill would establish that officers may NOT use chokeholds or neck restraints, use an unleashed police dog for the purpose of apprehending and individual, purchase, acquire, use, or authorize is officers to use tear gas for any purpose, acquire or purchase any military equipment, or intentionally cover, conceal, or obscure the number of their badge while on duty.
- HEAL Act (Healthy Environment for All Act) (SB 5141)
This Bill defines environmental justice in state law and requires its application, using a racial justice lens, in Washington’s State agencies strategic plans, creates goal and metric setting, program implementation, enforcement, and reporting affecting the environment. The Heal Act directs funding with environmental benefits toward investments in and determined by communities highly impacted by pollution or climate impacts. We are supporting this bill in collaboration with the Front and Center Coalition.
- Extended Producer Responsibility (SB 5022)
Requires producers to form or join extended producer responsibility programs for packaging, food serviceware and printing and writing paper. Establishes Extended Producer Responsibility Fund. Prohibits sale of products that make deceptive or misleading claims about recyclability. Requires commingled recycling processing facility to obtain disposal site permit. Imposes penalty not to exceed $100 per day for violation of program provisions by retailer and penalty not to exceed $25,000 per day for violation by producer or extended producer responsibility organization.Requires extended producer responsibility organization to first implement the program no later than July 1, 2025. Provides that labeling and facility permitting provisions become operative July 1, 2025.
Applies to covered products sold on or after July 1, 2025.
- Community Capacity for Wildfire Adaptation: WA Fire Adapted Community and Latino Community Wildfire Adaptation
Based on Latinx Climate Innovation Lab and Community Fire Resilience work completed over the last year, Latino Community Fund and WA Fire Adapted Communities Network (WRC&D) are pursuing $2 million in the state’s 2021-2023 budget for community capacity to prepare for and respond to wildfire: $1 million to support and expand the work of the successful WA Fire Adapted Communities Network; and $1 million specifically to support and expand into more communities the community engagement and wildlife adaptation curriculum from Latino Community Fund and local partners throughout WA State.
We want to hear from you - if you or a community member has engaged in the session through testimony and wants to tell their story and experience, please email us at [email protected] and we’d love to share in our newsletter.