Advocacy Teams for Jan 28 to Feb 1, Bills & Committees: Join in, ya’ll!

From our Lobbying Director, Vicki Yeroian:
This is your second weekly update to our VA NOW General Assembly action! Thank you to those who got active last week on gun violence prevention!
Monday morning at 8am, myself and VA NOW VP of Legislative Affairs, Marj Signer, will be attending the Senate Courts of Justice Committee meeting in Senate Room B of the General Assembly Building to testify and monitor the votes on–
  • Support SB 520 Firearm transfers; penalties.
  • Support SB 510 Firearms; possession following conviction of certain crimes (domestic violence, sexual assault, assault and battery)
If you are in Richmond and would like to attend, please join us!! To remind you, we have asked all of our all star GA volunteers  to commit to the following:
  • Writing at least two emails to committees you are interested in following, one in Jan and one in Feb
  • To try to make it out to a committee meeting when legislation is being voted on OR (more realistically) send an email to your selected committees when you are alerted that bills are being voted on. You will be alerted via a weekly email from me!
  • To attend an advocacy day to gain more experience with the legislative process
To become a GA Advocacy Volunteer, please email me at Lobbyingdirector@vanow.org. Also, see our complete guide and updates to GA Advocacy with VA NOW at our VA NOW in Action page.
So, what’s up this week??  First, I have attached our VA NOW billsheets for this week. Every week they are updated, as some of the legislation we are monitoring dies or gets passed by indefinitely in committee. Remember, we are tracking bills related to the following topics–
  • Family Health
  • Community Safety
  • Social and Economic Equity
  • Civil and Human Rights
Second, we have linked an updated committee tracking document, which is how you can find out where legislation you are interested in currently is! Since we will only be sending out an email once a week, please be sure you  take a minute, two or three times a week, to check the docket of the committees your bills are in and see if you should send out an email or not. Links to all dockets are in the committee tracking document.
What we recommend taking action on this week:
Access to birth control and abortion—
(all in either House Courts of Justice or House Commerce and Labor)
Support HB 546 Abortion; optional ultrasound.
Support HB 547 Ultrasound prior to abortion; physician civil penalty
Support HB 565 Birth control; definition.

Support HB 1056 Abortion; informed consent

Support HB 1186 Health insurance; essential health benefits, abortion coverage
Oppose HB 18 Health insurance; health care plan that includes contraception coverage, etc.
Oppose HB 19 Health insurance; contraception coverage if subscriber or enrollee requests such coverage.
Oppose HB 20 Health insurance; no health insurance plan is required to include contraception coverage
Oppose HB 98 Abortions; sex-selective, penalty

Preventing domestic violence and stalking—
(all in House Courts of Justice)
Support HB 1226 Stalking; penalty**
**Newly elected Delegate Sam Rasoul specifically patroned HB 1226 at the request of VA NOW!! Let’s give him extra support by reaching out to committee members in House Courts of Justice! I have created and attached a fact sheetspecific to the increasing use of technology in cases of stalking. I hope it is helpful to you**
Support HB 48 Firearms; possession following conviction of certain crimes, penalty
Support HB 708 Assault and battery; family or household member.

Human Trafficking—

(House bills are in House Courts of Justice; Senate bills are in the Senate Courts of Justice)
Support HB 595 Criminal Justice Services, Department of; human trafficking policy
Support HB 716 Trafficking in persons; penalties.
Support SB 373 Trafficking in persons; penalties.
Support SB 453 Human trafficking; penalties.
The link to all standing committees in the General Assembly: http://lis.virginia.gov/141/com/COM.HTM
If you end up misplacing any documents, like our fact sheets, please note you can always check out our VA NOW website to stay updated and informed on the issues. The direct link is here:  http://vanow.org/represent/vanow-in-action . Other useful resources for advocacy and general political news are here: http://vanow.org/represent.
And always remember, if you have any questions, concerns, or would like to talk about any piece of legislation we are monitoring, do not hesitate to contact me directly! Please have a wonderful week and and keep an eye out for updates here, on the website, and our Facebook and Twitter feeds.
Vicki Yeroian, BSW
Statewide Director of Lobbying, VA NOW
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