2019 Washington State Legislative Session Updates

Health Care

SB 5822: Path to Universal Health Care

At our Health Care for All coalition meeting we urged lawmakers to take significant policy steps toward providing truly universal health care. This could be it.

Feb. 4: Bill introduced and referred to the Health & Long Term Care Committee.

Feb. 11: Bill scheduled for its first hearing at 1:30 p.m. in the Health & Long Term Care Committee.

Comment in support of SB 5822!

HB 1523/SB 5526: Cascade Care

Jan. 30: House Bill 1523 got a hearing. Stakeholders were given time to testify, but community groups were given smaller time frames to weigh in. Three community members who traveled from out of town didn’t get a chance to speak.

Washington CAN submitted testimony thanking lawmakers for attempting to improve health care access, but urged them to go further by running Cascade Care through that Health Care Authority, making it a real Public Option, and also to facilitate the ability to include all residents, including undocumented people.

February 6: The Senate Bill is scheduled for a hearing at 1:30 pm in the Health and Wellness Committee.

Comment on HB 1523 and SB 5526!

Suggested message: Amend HB 1523 and SB 5526 to run the program through the Health Care Authority, making it a True Public Option, and open it to all residents.

HB 1065/SB 5031: End Surprise Billing

Jan. 23: HB 1065 got it's first hearing in the House Health Committee with moving consumer testimony.

Feb. 1: HB 1065 scheduled for executive session.

Comment in support of HB 1065!

Feb. 4: SB 5031 up for its first hearing at 1:30 pm in the Health and Long Term Care Committee.

Comment in support of SB 5031!

If Sen. Reuven Carlyle, who represents the 36th District, is your lawmaker, urge him to support SB 5031!

Suggested message: Sen. Reuven Carlyle, Family emergencies are already traumatic and terrifying. Help Washington families by ensuring we don't face further devastation with outrageous surprise billing. Support SB 5031!

HB 1697/SB 5814: Health Coverage for ALL young adults

These bills would ensure no young adult, regardless of documentation status, goes without health care coverage.

Jan. 28: HB 1697 is referred to Health Care and Wellness Committee

Comment in support of HB 1697!

Feb. 4: SB 5814 is introduced and referred to the Health & Long Term Care Committee.

Comment in support of SB 5814!

SB 5292/HB 1224: Prescription Pricing Transparency

This bill has passed the House in each of the past two legislative sessions and is expected to once again. The Senate is where we are directing our focus.

Jan. 28: SB 5292 heard and two Washington CAN members testified. They shared their stories of experiences dealing with enormous prescription drug bills, and how this legislation cannot wait another year, as there are so many that continue to live with these struggles.

Email Sen. Annette Cleveland, if she is your lawmaker, and urge her to support SB 5292.

Comment in support of SB 5292!

Comment in support of HB 1224!

Suggested message: Don’t let Big Pharma slow our progress! Pass SB 5292!


Housing

HB 1453 and SB 5600: Eviction Reform

Jan. 28: SB 5600 got its first hearing. Tenants and advocates packed the Housing Stability & Affordability Committee hearing room. More than 150 people signed in as Pro and several gave compelling, emotional testimony. Tenants like Gina and Keilani shared their personal experiences with eviction. Professionals in the legal, social services, and health care world shared their experiences working with tenants undergoing eviction.

Feb. 5: HB 1453 is scheduled for its first hearing in the House Committee on Civil Rights & Judiciary Committee.

Both bills would extend the eviction “pay or vacate” notice period from three days. HB 1453 would extend the period to 21 days and SB 5600 would extend the period to 14 days. Both bills would give judges more discretion to consider the tenant’s situation in an eviction case.

Tell your lawmakers to pass eviction reform!


Mass Liberation

SB 5819: Establishing a post-conviction review board

Feb. 4: Bill introduced.

We are fighting for a Community Review Board that would give incarcerated folks with long-term sentences a chance to come home. We will fight to make sure any post-conviction review board includes a racial analysis to begin to chip away at the racism embedded in our justice system.

Feb. 14: Bill scheduled for hearing at 10 am in the Senate Committee on Law & Justice.

Comment in support of SB 5819!


Immigration

Keep Washington Working Act

Our economy and communities thrive only when we make it clear ALL of us are welcome. We don’t want our local police to take on the role of federal officers, when they should be focused on community safety and well-being. We also cannot have our communities living in fear.