Advocacy Teams & Tasks Week 5 (Feb 17-21)

Hello wonderful VA NOW advocates and allies,

This is your fifth weekly update to our VA NOW General Assembly action! Thank you to those who got active last week on voting rights, gender equity, and poverty reduction!! To remind you, we have asked all our all star GA volunteers (yes, that’s YOU!) 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.

~~ To attend an advocacy day to gain more experience with the legislative process.

So, what’s up this week??

First, this will be our last week of action alerts! The General Assembly Session is coming to an end, and this is the last real week to make a direct impact. So please, if you have not sent out your Feb committee action email, please do so this week! I will send you all an update with how session turned out at the end of the month in the Richmond NOW Feminist Newsletter–look out for an email from rva.now@gmail.com!

Second, billsheets for this week are linked at vanow.org/represent/vanow-in-action. 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

Third, you will see 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: (below the fold)


Voting Rights:

(All in House Privileges and Elections)
Support SB 16 Absentee voting; persons age 65 or older on day of an election are entitled to vote absentee ballot.
Support SB 11 Absentee voting and procedures; secure return of voted military-overseas ballots.
Support SB 191 Voter registration; duties of State Board of Elections

Community Health and Safety:

(All in House Courts of Justice)
Support SB 14 Crimes against nature; clarifies provisions of clause, penalty
Support SB 260 Temporary detention order; facility of detention
Support SB 658 Physical evidence recovery kits; DFS required to create and maintain inventory

Education Access:

(All in House Rules)
Support SJ 47 Study; joint subcommittee to study the mental health services in the Commonwealth; report
Support SJ 10 Study; improving access to higher ed for students with developmental and intellectual disabilities. 

Poverty Reduction:

(All in House Counties, Cities, and Towns)
Support SB 10 Water and sewer; discounted fees and charges for certain low-income and disabled customers
Support SB 67 Discounted fees and charges; City of Richmond may develop criteria for certain customers. 

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 or what our strategy is for writing Committee emails, 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.

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 talk with you soon!!

Vicki Yeroian, BSW
Statewide   Director of   Lobbying, VA NOW
lobbyingdirector@vanow.org

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